Dr. Rena Elizabeth Johnson and Mr. Daniel Lee Morse were united in marriage 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 8, 2013 at Macedonia Christian Church in Williamston, N.C. Minister Greg Sexton officiated the traditional double ring ceremony.
The chancel area of the church was decorated with arrangements of white roses, hydrangeas, lilies, mums and gladioli and accented with peace lilies, ivy and boxwood wreaths. Pillar candles in hurricane globes were placed in memory of loved ones of the couple.
The bride is the daughter of Bobby Carroll and Carolyn Hodges Johnson of Williamston. She is the granddaughter of the late John David and Joann Miltenberger Hodges of Williamston and Harold Olander and Nancy Brady Johnson of Walstonburg. Rena Beth is a graduate of Bear Grass High School, attended East Carolina University and earned a Doctorate of Pharmacy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2007. She then completed a PGY1 residency at Pitt County Memorial Hospital and is currently a clinical pharmacist at Vidant Medical Center in Greenville.
The groom is the son of Dr. Benford Evans Jr. and Ann Ussery Morse of Aberdeen. He is the grandson of Thomas Hearne and Billie Hendrix Ussery of Cordova and the late Benford Evans and Margaret Hudson Morse of Rockingham. Daniel graduated from Kinston High School and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a degree in Clinical Laboratory Science and Biology in 2008. Following graduation, he worked as a microbiologist in the clinical laboratory at Pitt County Memorial Hospital. He is currently a 2014 doctoral candidate at the University of North Carolina Eshelman School of Pharmacy at Chapel Hill.
The bride was escorted by her father and given in marriage by her parents. She wore a white re-embroidered Alencon lace bateau neck gown with corseted under bodice, natural waist and lace covered buttons with an a-line skirt and sweep train. She chose a cathedral length veil of bridal illusion embellished with a rhinestone beaded scalloped edge and carried a bouquet of white bridal roses, white and blush peonies, stephanotis and lily of the valley. Her pearl bracelet belongs to the maternal grandmother of the groom and pearl earrings were a wedding day gift from the groom.
Matron of honor was Dr. Melissa Anne Hobbins of Roanoke, Virginia, friend of the bride. Attending as bridesmaids were Kimberly Anne Morse, sister in law of the groom of Knightdale and cousins of the bride, Lauren Carpenter Ozmore of Raleigh and Anna Catherine Warren of Apex. They wore champagne tea length dresses with illusion bateau necklines, trimmed with champagne charmeuse. Jewelry of blue crystals, handmade by the bride completed their outfits. Junior bridesmaids were Elizabeth Grace and Olivia Claire Paszt of Washington and Abigail Hope Warren of Apex, cousins of the bride. They wore white satin tea length dresses accented with champagne organdy sashes and carried mixed rose bouquets similar to the bridesmaids.
The mother of the bride chose a pink tea length two piece silk dress and the mother of the groom wore a blue three piece silk dress, a gift from the paternal grandmother of the groom. They wore white rose corsages, as did the grandmother of the groom.
The groom’s brother, Matthew Evans Morse of Knightdale, served as best man. Groomsmen were Joseph David Johnson, brother of the bride of Raleigh and friends of the groom, Jonathan Mark Longwill of Greensboro and Jamaal Matthew Purnsley of Durham. They wore traditional black tuxedos identical to the groom with black bowties and cummerbunds and white rose boutonnieres. The groom’s boutonniere of stephanotis and lily of the valley complemented the bride’s bouquet.
Guests were greeted and programs presented by Morgan Mei Hendrix of Pinehurst, cousin of the groom. The wedding director was Brenda Speller of Washington assisted by Sandra Warren of Williamston.
Wedding music was provided by the Trent River Chamber Players of New Bern. The wedding song by Paul Stookey was used before the entrance of the bride. A scripture reading from 1 John was provided by John David Hodges, III, cousin of the bride.
A reception was hosted by the parents of the bride following the wedding at Bellefont Plantation House in Washington. Guests were greeted by Lois Ward and Debbie and Asa Harrison, all of Williamston. Light hors d’oeuvres were served before the arrival of the bridal party, followed by a buffet dinner and dancing. Music was provided by E.J. and Company Light and Sound Shows. Wedding cake was served by Lois McCullen of Lake Waccamaw and Linda Croom of Ayden, aunts of the bride and Joe White of Myrtle Grove Plantation in Falkland. The couple left in a shower of sparklers and was chauffeured by the brother of the bride in his vintage 1968 Mustang.
The parents of the groom hosted the rehearsal dinner at Ribeyes of Williamston on Friday evening prior to the wedding. A video tribute to the couple’s childhoods and courtship was compiled and presented by the brother of the bride.
An engagement dinner was held at the Angus Barn in Raleigh for the immediate families of the couple.
Several parties and showers were held to honor the bride and groom prior to the wedding. A floating wedding shower was hosted by the bride’s church family and friends at Macedonia Christian Church on April 20. Pharmacy coworkers of the bride hosted a miscellaneous couple’s shower at Vidant Medical Center on May 1. The groom’s family hosted a his and hers shower on May 11 at the Cordova Baptist Church. Also in May, aunt and uncle of the bride, Lois and Garland McCullen, entertained the couple and family with a dinner at Plum Tree Bistro in Greenville. A bridal tea was given by the bride’s mother on May 25 at the Carolina Inn in Chapel Hill for the bridal party and close friends and family of the couple.
After a honeymoon trip to Hawaii and San Francisco, the couple have made their home in Greenville.