In a promise to her dying mother, Lara Mark moved forward with her wedding to U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Cylas Hensley on Monday, March 20, 2023 – the first day of spring. While a wedding ceremony at William P. Hobby Airport's Interfaith Chapel had never happened in the history of Houston's oldest airport, for the couple, it makes perfect sense.
“It's a wedding in the airport," said Ella Ghica, Manager of Volunteer Outreach Initiatives for Houston Airports. "The airport was operational during the wedding. We did not close down the area. We still had passengers flying in and planes taking off and Lara and Cylas’ love story took flight.”
The wedding took place at Hobby Airport, two hours before the Hensley’s boarded their flight bound for their honeymoon in Mexico. While neither family nor friends were able to attend the wedding, dozens of aviation workers gladly stood in their place.
"What a wonderful group of people to celebrate this with," Mark said.
Southwest Airlines created signage and provided decorations and flowers. The USO served the couple’s first toast. Harmony in the Air, the award-winning performing arts program of Houston Airports, played live music for Mark’s short walk down the aisle so the couple could enjoy their first dance in the food court as curious passengers watched with delight.
Paredes Lagardère, a Houston Airports concessionaire, donated a freshly baked cake in the couple's favorite flavors. The Houston Airports Communications Team snapped the wedding day photos, Ghica served as Mark's Maid of Honor and Chaplain Kenneth Richardson, a Houston Airports volunteer, presided over the nuptials.
"Whether it was a layover or a missed flight, the airport has been a huge part of our lives," said Hensley.
"We plan to fly through Houston for decades to come,” said Mark, “and every time we visit Hobby Airport we will think of our wedding and the people who made it so very special.”