In a tale of love lost that is either touching or weird (or both), a Thai man held a combination funeral and wedding last week for his longtime girlfriend who died, unexpectedly, before they could wed officially. (See a photo below.) Here, a short guide to this bittersweet event:
Who is this guy?
Chadil Deffy, also known as Deff Yingyuen, is a TV director from Northeastern Thailand. For the past 10 years he has focused on his continuing education and budding career since graduating from the Eastern Asia University, where he met his girlfriend Sarinya "Anne" Kamsook.
What's their story?
After falling in love at the university and staying together for a decade, Anne had wanted to get married, but settled for a promise of matrimony while Deff got his professional life in order. But Anne died in an accident on Jan. 3, leaving Deff's promise unkept. The bereft boyfriend decided, however belatedly, to honor his word.
What was this ceremony?
Friends and family were invited via Facebook to the wedding-cum-funeral rite at a local temple in Surin Province. The grieving TV director had a small film crew capture the event and reportedly invited a novice monk, which in the Thai Buddhist tradition ensures a loving marriage. Deff wore a tuxedo, top hat, and white bow-tie, while his bride, laid out on wooden platform, wore a short white dress, fishnet stockings and gloves, and a veil. In front of a small group of family friends, Deff placed a wedding ring on his bride's finger, kissed her hand, and her forehead.
How are people responding?
After photos of the ceremony were posted on Deff's Facebook page, the public response ranged from sympathetic to skeptical. But as one friend wrote in an op-ed in the Bangkok Post: "The "wedding" was [Deff's] attempt to right a wrong, however belated the gesture might have been."