Paul Eckert cried when he saw the movie "Father of the Bride." And his eyes fill when he remembers his own starring role as father of the bride at his daughter Jaimee's wedding last summer.
"It was tender, emotional, you never forget," Eckert said. "Dancing with her (at the reception) was the most emotional moment for me. That's when I internalized that's she's leaving us. This is a real transitioning moment in our lives, in her life and ours."
Jaimee Lynn Eckert, daughter of Los Altos Realtor Paul and Mary Eckert, married Kenneth Gordon Taylor Aug. 21, 1997, at the Oakland temple of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
The next day the Eckerts hosted a garden reception at their home on University Avenue in Los Altos.
Jaimee's sister Alli, who is 16 and a sophomore at Los Altos High School, and her friends provided valet parking for guests.
To get ready for the wedding, "We had frantic preparations for a couple of months," Eckert said. "I put in a patio. We painted, outside and in. You fluff a house before a wedding."
In the whirlwind of activities before the big day, sometimes Eckert said he felt "kind of unnecessary. The thing takes on a life of its own."
But then he had a chance to say a few words at the ring ceremony.
"It seemed like just recently I changed her diapers, then she was on roller skates, then ribbons, then I shared her triumphs. Then she went away to school. And now she's married and not really coming back."
Jaimee, who graduated from Los Altos High School in 1994, will be graduating from Brigham Young University in Utah this spring. She met her groom in college.
And her parents love him.
"We thought she'd get married later. But he's the right guy. He's very, very bright, a great soccer player, an all-around athlete. She just couldn't let him get away," Eckert said.
The new son-in-law will be starting graduate school at either the University of California at Berkeley where he has a fellowship for an engineering degree or at Stanford, where he has been admitted to the MBA program.
"They're coming back," Eckert said, and he smiles with delight at the prospect.
"We were real close. It seems weird to have her gone," Eckert said. "But there's a permanent change in our relationship. She has her own family unit now."