George W. Bush's Daughter Barbara Wears Vera Wang Wedding Dress & Late Grandmother's Bracelet
And the bride wore Vera Wang!
The bride chose a custom ivory silk crepe Vera Wang gown featuring a spaghetti strap detail and a cowl draped neckline. She paired it with a nude sandal, an elegant, translucent shawl, which draped over her shoulders and grazed the ground, and a sentimental reminder of her grandmother (and namesake), who died at age 92 in April.
“It’s really sweet. The ‘something borrowed’ that I’m wearing is this bracelet that my grandfather gave to my grandmother on their 70th anniversary,” Barbara told PEOPLE. Her “something blue” was a pair of earrings from her twin sister, Jenna Bush Hager.
Only 20 family members witnessed the simple yet romantic ceremony, which was held at the Bush family compound in Kennebunkport, Maine, in the backyard overlooking the ocean.
“A very short, sweet ceremony” is how Barbara described it.
After the bride’s father, 72, walked her down the aisle, she exchanged vows with her groom in front of their immediate families, including Mrs. Bush, 71, and Barbara’s grandfather, 94. Bush Hager, served as matron of honor, and her daughters, Margaret, 5, and Poppy, 3, were flower girls along with Coyne’s niece, Emma, 5. Poppy did double duty at the ceremony, also serving as the ring bearer.
The bride’s aunt, Dorothy “Doro” Bush Koch, officiated.
The couple tied the knot after a whirlwind, five-week engagement. In the same week, Coyne relocated from L.A. to make his new home with Barbara in Manhattan.
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During a family gathering at Kennebunkport this summer, Coyne dropped to his knee while they were walking along the oceanside rocks in the same spot where Barbara’s grandparents got engaged almost exactly 75 years earlier, in August 1943. Coyne and Bush were set up by friends on a blind date last November and were committed as a couple by New Year’s Eve.
The bride leads a very low-key life out of the spotlight in comparison to her twin, who works as a correspondent for NBC’s Today show.
Barbara is the co-founder and former CEO of the nonprofit Global Health Corps, which works to solve health issues in the U.S. and Africa. Earlier this year she gave over the reigns of CEO to Daniela Terminel, but she’s stayed on as Global Health Corps’ board chair.
“To be able to step away from something we’ve worked so hard to build means…that we did it!,” she wrote in the announcement published on Medium. “Or rather that we’re doing it and that we’ll keep it up.”
Jenna has been married to her husband, Harry Hager, since 2008 and Barbara commented on her then-unmarried status in the 2017 memoir, Sisters First, which was co-written with Jenna.
“I have heard every variation of the question: ‘Why aren’t you married?’ My answer is always the same: ‘If I wanted to be married, I would be.’ I’ve had wonderful partners but there was always too much work to do, too much of the world to be seen.”