The idea came to Angela Strozier, who was watching Coming to America with her grandmother, Martha Mae Ophelia Moon Tucker, 94.
When the iconic wedding scene popped up with Shari Headley sporting that pink gown, Ms Tucker muttered something that Ms Strozier couldn’t understand.
Ms Tucker eventually repeated herself, saying one of her longest wishes aloud, “I’ve always wanted to try on a wedding dress,” she told her granddaughter, who dished about the surprise to AL.com.
Ms Tucker did not get the chance to wear a wedding dress when she married her husband Lehman Tucker Sr in 1952, as according to law at the time, Black women were not allowed in bridal boutiques, according to Ms Strozier.
Instead, she donned a navy gown styled on Dorothy Dandrige’s costume Oscar nominated title role Carmen Miranda.
Mr Tucker passed away in 1975, and while she expressed no interest in marrying again, Ms Tucker still never gave up wanting the white wedding gown experience. As soon as she heard about this desire, Ms Strozier jumped on the internet and booked an appointment at a wedding dress shop.
They went to David’s Bridal at 1.30pm on a Saturday, and the whole day was about Ms Tucker, who got a complete makeover from makeup artist Pharris Clayton.
Ms Tucker tried on two gowns, and she said about the experience, “I felt like I was getting married. I didn’t want to take it off, but I knew I had to. I looked good in it though.”
“You know, I can’t even express how special it was. It was too special,” she told AL.com. “I’ve been wanting to do that a long time.
Ms Strozier said of her grandmother, “being fantastic is just an understatement of who she is”, as Ms Tucker’s achievements are many. She spent her youth working alongside civil rights activists and became a registered poll worker in 1963 with the Birmingham City Council. Her retirement after her long tenure with the local authority was celebrated by Mayor Randall Woodfin. On top of this, she is a mother of four, grandmother of 11 and great grandmother of 18.
Ms Strozier said their family loved celebrating the grandmother. “She’s always winning to entertain our shenanigans. She has always told us to give her her flowers while she’s still here, not when she’s gone, so she can enjoy them.”
She continued, “Whenever she expressed that she wants to do something, wants to go somewhere, wants to experience something, we try our best to make it happen.”
“She’s our grandmother, and to have a grandmother so full of life at 94 is a blessing.”
Other family members were involved in the special day out at the bridal shop, and shared their glee on social media.
Lisa Tucker wrote in a Facebook post, “ I always tease her about being famous and tell her how we had to get use to sharing her with Birmingham, now we are sharing her with the world. I’m glad the world get to see just how blessed we are. Live your dream Grandma.”
According to ABC 3340 , Ms Tucker now wants a wedding reception and to go on vacation to Jersaulem and Hawaii.