When Laura Marie Buka met Sean O’Donnell through a mutual friend, she had no idea he was a professional hockey player.
“I thought he was very charming,” she says. “He had such a calm demeanor but I had no idea what he did for a living. I just noticed he was a giant.”
Although Buka was hesitant about dating an athlete, when she agreed to go out with him they clicked right away.
“Within nine months we were engaged,” she says. “Something about him was peaceful and made me feel safe and at ease.”
The couple were married on July 11, 2009 at Fort Street Presbyterian Church in Detroit, Michigan. Sean’s current and former Kings teammates Rob Blake, Drew Doughty and Luc Robitaille were among the guests.
The bride wore a strapless wedding dress by Renee Strauss and walked down the aisle on the arm of her father. She handmade her veil with fabric purchased in downtown Los Angeles. The twelve bridesmaids wore dresses by David’s Bridal.
Following the ceremony, a reception was held at the Henry Ford Museum in nearby Dearborn. The theme for the evening was classic vintage, and guests dined at candlelit tables under crystal chandeliers.
The couple shared their first dance in a room originally built for Henry Ford’s employees to learn ballroom dance.
“It was breathtaking,” Laura Marie says. “For my family to see me so happy and in love with a wonderful man was the highlight of the day. We’re best friends, and celebrating our day with all our closest friends and family meant the world to me.”
The couple honeymooned in Italy and Greece, a surprise from the groom to his bride.