Say ‘I Do’ on Valentine’s Day

They fell in love when he was 16, and she was 14. They never married, and there was never anyone else. Now, 14 years later Derick Willis and Angela Seagle will marry Tuesday, Feb. 14, at 5:30 p.m. And, they expect quite a crowd — in fact, a “courthouse” full of friends and family.

Willis and Seagle will make Valentine’s Day their wedding day by saying “I do” at the Register of Deeds office in Catawba County.

Traditionally a day for weddings, many couples decide to marry on Valentine’s Day, so for the sixth consecutive year, couples struck by Cupid’s arrow will exchange wedding vows at the Register of Deeds office.

A friend of Seagle and Willis told them about saying “I do” at the Register of Deeds.

“We’ve waited to get married for a long time,” Seagle said, “and we talk about it, but now seems the right time. We were the first to call for an appointment to be married.

“There’ll be a courthouse full,” she added. “We have lots of family.”

Among family will be two very special people — the couple’s sons, Zackary, 5, and Hunter, 10.

“I was 15 when we officially moved in together, and at 16 I was pregnant,” Seagle said. “We’re a family, and it’s always been that way The kids know momma and daddy have always been together.”

The Newton couple met through mutual friends. Seagle knew Willis’ sisters in elementary school but never knew they had a brother.

“I knew that boy was going to be mine when I first laid eyes on him,” she said. “I knew he was the one I’d spend the rest of my life with.”

The first night they met, the couple spent six hours talking.

“That’s the longest I ever talked to anybody,” Seagle said. “I felt like I knew him all my life. I love him more than ever now.”

With the closeness and camaraderie of two people absolutely meant for each other and very much in love, their conversation flows easily back and forth from one another.

“We met and fell in love,” Willis said.

The secret for still being happy?

“There’s give and take,” Willis said. “A lot of that.”

“That, and we have fun,” Seagle said.

“We laugh a lot,” he responded. “We’re each other’s best friend.”

“We always laugh,” she said. “We’re happy together.”

“It’s even better now than it used to be,” he said.

“We figured each other out,” she said.

“There’s nothing we wouldn’t do for each other,” he said.

The couples’ witnesses are Seagle’s mother, Earlene Jarvis, and Willis’ father, Danny Ray Willis. A reception will be held Saturday at Bethlehem Baptist Church. Then, the newly weds will honeymoon in Gatlinburg, Tenn., in a cabin in Honeymoon Hills.

Oh, and there’s one more detail.

“We’re all decked out — my dress matches the whole Valentine theme,” Seagle said. “My dress is white with red trim, and the train is white, except where it opens in the back — that’s red.”

More details
What: Say “I do” at Catawba County Register of Deeds office. Bring your sweetheart, marriage license, $20 and two witnesses. The Register of Deeds office handles the rest.

When: Tuesday, Feb. 14, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Where: Register of Deeds, located in the Catawba County Justice Center, 110-B Southwest Blvd., Newton.
For information: Call Donna Spencer or Tracy Pruitt at 828-465-1573. Details online at

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Ceremonies are for individual couples and not group weddings.

There is a $60 charge for a wedding license in North Carolina.

Information regarding
marriage licenses

• $30 goes to the Department of Administration for Domestic Violence Programs.

• $5 goes to the N.C. Department of Public Instruction Children’s Trust Fund.

• $25 is the Register of Deeds fee under N.C. General Statutes.

• Couples must marry in North Carolina within 60 days from the issuance date of the marriage license.

• Can marry as soon as they are issued from any county in N.C.

• If license is obtained from Catawba County Register of Deeds, they will hold onto to it until time of wedding

• If license retained from another county, bring it to the Catawba County Register of Deeds office by no later than Feb. 13 in order to be part of the drawings. However, bring the license the same day and still receive gifts designated “all.”

• North Carolina requires two witnesses on the marriage license who need to be at the ceremony.

• Arrive 15 minutes prior scheduled time.

• Walk-ins are welcome.

• Upon arrival on Feb. 14 with witnesses, family and friends, please see a staff member.

• At this time, Register of Deeds staff will add witnesses’ names and addresses to the license.
Feel free to dress as you would like (jeans to wedding gowns work).

For $20, special gifts are available.

Special gifts
The (drawings) are for those who have applied for a marriage license by the end of Tuesday, Feb. 13. With the (all) and (first come) being for the above and the walk-ins that are welcome.

• Newton Florist — flowers for the bride and groom (first come)

• Abundant Life Florist — decorations for ceremony (all)

• Honey’s IGA — 3 tier Cake for cake cutting (all)

• Pastor Don Bledsoe of Newton (all)

• Valley Rentals — decorations for ceremony (all)

• Crown Plaza — One-night stay with champagne/sparkling cider and breakfast and Sunday brunches (drawing)

• Shells BBQ — dinner for two (drawing)

• Renee Hentschel, Realtor — gift basket (drawing) & gift bags (all)

• Sabastian Boutique — $100 gift basket (drawing)
Free services upon purchase of a dress and 1/2 off on any suit/tuxedo rental (all)

• Trott House Inn Bed & Breakfast — one night stay (drawing)

• OZ’s — 24k gold trim roses (first come)

• Curves — 30 day membership (Brides)

• It’s My Party Rentals — decorations for ceremony (all)

• Conover Tavern — Sunday brunch (drawing)

• Catawba Country Club — Wednesday night buffet. (drawing)