A bride is opening up about the emotional moment she was walked down the aisle by her younger brother in place of their quadriplegic father.
“I knew it was going to be emotional and so special,” explained Kopsidas, 26. “There wasn’t a dry eye in the house. It was really special, and my dad was really happy that we did it that way because he got to see everyone in the room.”
According to Kopsidas, her father was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis when she was just 2-years-old. The disease impacts the brain and spinal cord, which can cause unpredictable symptoms ranging from numbness and memory problems to blindness or paralysis, per the National MS Society.
As Kopsidas got older, she said her dad’s condition worsened. He has lived as a quadriplegic for the last seven years, which has resulted in his own parents and children caring for him, Insider reported.
“My parents divorced before my dad got sick,” Kopsidas explained to the outlet. “But my mom, siblings, and I help out weekly to make sure he is well taken care of.”
After recently becoming engaged, Kopsidas began thinking about how her father would be able to accompany her down the aisle at her wedding, despite being confined to a wheelchair.
Ultimately, he was the one who suggested that he watch his daughter walk down the aisle instead of doing it himself, according to Insider.
Wanting to keep her father as comfortable as possible, Kopsidas turned to her younger brother in hopes that he would take their dad’s place at her wedding.
“He’s always been the baby of the family, so it was really special,” Kopsidas told Insider of her brother. “He was honored and excited, but probably a little bit sad because my dad couldn’t walk me down.”
“I feel like he knew I was going to ask him, so he was happy to be able to do it for our family,” she added.
Ahead of the ceremony, Kopsidas told Insider she shared a “first look” with her dad. Her photographer captured the intimate moment, showing the pair crying as the bride leaned in to hug her dad.
Then, it was time for Kopsidas to make her grand entrance at the wedding.
During the touching moment — which Kopsidas told Insider was recorded by her mom, and has been viewed millions of times on TikTok — the bride was escorted down the aisle by her brother.
Their father was waiting at the altar with tears in his eyes, and once they met him, Kopsidas leaned down and gave her dad a kiss on the cheek.
“My dad was waiting for us at the altar and it was the most special moment,” Kopsidas captioned the video. “A moment I will never never forget #downtheaisle #emotionalvideos #multiplesclerosisawareness #MS #weddingvideos #quadrapalegic”
As of Thursday, the video has received over 1.2 million likes and 2,800 comments. Of the clip going viral, Kopsidas told Insider she was blown away.
“I knew that I would get a lot of attention from our family and friends because it is really special, and everyone loves my dad and has supported him, but I didn’t think it would be seen by millions,” she explained.
In the time since her wedding, Kopsidas has bought a house and gotten pregnant, according to Insider.
As she and her husband prepare to welcome their child, Kopsidas said she’s grateful that her father was able to be there for her big day.
“I’m his oldest, and we didn’t know whether he was going to be able to make it to my wedding day, so we both cried a lot,” she said.