Liz's wedding has it all: beautiful people, lots of clothes, helicopters

October 07, 1991|By Liz Smith | Liz Smith,Newsday

LOS OLIVOS, CALF. — Los Olivos, Calif.--She did it! In spite of 15 maddening helicopters overhead that almost drowned out the words of her marriage ceremony, and the parachutist who landed within 20 feet of the minister in the middle of the wedding, Elizabeth the Queen took as her consort last evening commoner and construction worker Larry Fortensky.

Security chief Moshe Alon and his "professional security consultants" say they were ready for the errant paratrooper, who came down in a vividly colored chute which was instantly torn to shreds as he was pounced on by a phalanx of Alon's men. You might think this sort of happening would destroy a wedding, but security hustled the guy away so fast that the incident lasted less than 30 seconds. Minister Marianne Williamson announced, "A parachutist has landed, but it's being taken care of."

Many guests hardly saw the incident. The most distracting thing about the Taylor-Forten sky wedding was the noise from the helicopters. At one point, the minister shouted to the audience, "I know you can't hear us, but I promise you that Elizabeth and Larry can hear!"

Among the fragments of the ceremony, Williamson said to Larry, "Elizabeth is literally God's gift to you for your healing and her healing. Not only has God given her to you, but he has given you to her, so that both of you might show us more fully your love for one another."

Taylor and Fortensky became man and wife on the green near Michael Jackson's house on his splendid 2,700-acre fairy-tale estate, "Neverland," under a white gazebo that is placed in the shade of a great oak.

The wedding was to begin at 5:30 p.m. Pacific time, and about that time Elizabeth's mother, Sarah, was taken in a wheelchair to the front row. Time passed; people began to get up and wander around. When the designer, Valentino, with his companion, Doris Brynner, former wife of Yul Brynner, sat down at 6:13, someone said, "This is a good sign." Valentino laughed and nodded. He had just come from arranging his dress on the bride. About that time, Nancy Reagan, with a party of three people, came down the walkway and sat in the front row near Elizabeth's mother. (Ronald Reagan was not with her; he sent word he was detained by "business.")

At 6:15, Marianne Williamson, wearing a beige Holly Harp dress, came to the gazebo, followed by Fortensky in a white dinner jacket.

The pianist did not play "Here Comes the Bride," but to some indescribable music, Elizabeth appeared in her vivid yellow princess floor-length Valentino dress. She was escorted by Michael Jackson on her right, and her son, actor Michael Wilding Jr., on her left.

The California guru closed the ceremony, saying, "Through the power vested in me by the State of California and by the fact that I do believe in your love for one another, I pronounce you, Larry and Elizabeth, Mr. and Mrs. Larry Fortensky!"

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