Cover photo: Nancy Hunter and Bob Riney tying the knot at Dallas-Fort Worth Airport Chapel.
Walk don’t run. For 20 years, Nancy Hunter and Bob Riney lived together in Dallas-Fort Worth, but were never married.
Nancy, a native of Long Island, New York, has been a Flight Attendant with Envoy since 1992, and her newly wedded husband has been an airline pilot since 1973. Bob has been a Captain and Check Airman with Envoy since 1989.
Since they met, the two have been on countless adventures together, like wild nights camping in the rain or marathon motorcycle rides all throughout the U.S. Five years ago, Bob finally gave Nancy a diamond (as Nancy puts it), but they were in no rush to officially tie the knot — until this Easter Sunday.
“We started talking about a wedding just before Christmas,” said Nancy. “We were in a place where it just felt right, and we were ready.”
“Wouldn’t change a thing”
Despite the soggiest of wet blankets (ahem, coronavirus), Nancy and Bob managed to hold a lovely, romantic and meaningful wedding ceremony at the chapel in Dallas-Fort Worth Airport. The two donned their work uniforms in lieu of a dress and tuxedo, because it fit the aviation-centric couple — “it’s who we are,” said Nancy.
Respecting the social distancing guidelines, they invited around 50 guests to virtually attend the wedding through a video communication web app. Just like any wedding, it was produced by family and friends coming together to create a special moment for their loved ones.
Their friend Chris offered his services as a Chaplain; Nancy’s sister Susan and brother-in-law J.D. handled the video conference, music, photos, rings and even the cake; Nancy’s daughter Debbie provided her mother’s bouquet and recorded the ceremony onto video.
“As it turned out, it was amazing!” said Nancy. “I had amazing help putting it all together. Everyone could be there, no one had to travel or even dress up. It was perfect, and I wouldn’t change a thing.”
Stay positive. Count your blessings.
While they won’t be going on a honeymoon anytime soon, they said they’re enjoying their time isolating at home together. Between long walks, rides on their motorcycles, and home-improvement projects, they still manage to “stay positive and count their blessings,” said Nancy.
“We are fortunate to be off from work during this time,” Nancy said. “I think it’s important to remember that this pandemic won’t last forever. When this is over, I think people will be friendlier and kinder to each other with a better sense of what is important in life.”
Bob will be retiring soon and Nancy has taken a voluntary leave of absence during the crisis. Now they have ample time to focus on staying safe at home and can enjoy their newlywed lives together, but they still can’t wait to get out and travel.
“When the pandemic is over, visiting our families and friends will be at the top of the list,” said Nancy. “By then, my house should be organized and my cooking should be outstanding.”
“Back in the air”
While Bob is nearing retirement and eager to live carefree without a schedule, he’s still going to miss his time as an Envoy pilot.
“I have never felt it was a job, but a privilege to get to do what I love,” said Bob. “I will especially miss the view of the clouds and the Earth from the flight deck. And I will miss the people — my fellow pilots, our Envoy family, and the passengers alike.”
Thankfully, Envoy will still have Nancy taking care of our customers once business gets back on track and she can return from her leave of absence.
“I am looking forward to relaxing a bit at home and hope to accomplish some of those things we all plan to do ‘someday’, like sorting my photos,” said Nancy. “It will be a treat to be home for a while as newlyweds, but I already miss flying and look forward to being back in the air.”
You and everyone else, Nancy.
Know any more “silver linings”? Send us an email at Envoy.News@aa.com. We’d love to share your stories of perseverance and hope during this COVID-19 crisis.