For 58 heart-wrenching hours in October 1987, America watched as Jessica McClure, a bright-eyed 18-month-old from Midland, Texas, lay trapped in an abandoned well—and the country celebrated when she emerged in the arms of jubilant rescuers. So perhaps it is only fitting that the girl the world knew as Baby Jessica would grow into a young woman who treasures her privacy, no more so than when she married Daniel Morales on the afternoon of Jan. 28.
McClure, 19, and Morales, 32, recited vows they wrote themselves as they stood before family and friends in the Greenwood Church of Christ near Midland. Following a Winter-Wonderland theme, the church was decorated with white Christmas trees and tulle; the bridesmaids wore purple dresses with “little white Santa Claus hats—it was beautiful,” says Rosario Galvan, Morales’s sister. After the service, guests had cake and punch at the church, then repaired to McClure’s grandparents’ home for a separate reception.
McClure met Morales, an oil-field worker, about a year ago, while she was working at a daycare center where Morales’s sister Armadina also had a job. A former student at Midland College, McClure, who lost part of a toe as a result of her ordeal, has said she remembers nothing of her brush with death. When she turns 25, however, she’ll come into a trust fund estimated at $1 million—donations that poured in from around the world. Yet friends and family say McClure has always been down-to-earth.
“She’s real nice, a very responsible person,” says Galvan. The newlyweds’ next task: buying a house. “They’re thinking of staying in Midland,” Galvan says. “This is their home.”