As longtime friends of Tracy and Connie Nemecek, we enjoyed so many great times with them around the country from multiple REO Speedwagon concerts to New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas, from the Miami International Boat Show to the Key West Offshore World Championships. But as a boating event, their wedding had to be the most memorable.
For Tracy and Connie Nemecek, a 47-foot Nor-Tech was the perfect wedding venue. Photo by Paul Rose copyright speeonthewater.com.
That special day started out with a group of boating friends for a late-morning lunch run to Bay Harbor, then a raft up in Horton Bay. Everywhere we went, Tracy was Tracy, full of his unique sense of fun and humor. We had to hurry to pull anchor and outrun a thunderstorm back to the marina, it poured and we were all worried about the weather for the 7 p.m. wedding.
As if planned, it cleared and was beautiful, then the wedding took place on the engine hatch sunpad of their boat, Rollin With The Changes. It was obvious that Tracy assisted Connie with the wedding planning. One of the unique highlights was that REO, their Shar Pei “served as best man and ring bearer.”
Once the wedding actually went into the service portion, the Tracy we all know and loved came out for all of us to see. He had it all planned out as to what he would say to Connie during their vows. He had his notes as an assist, which he had practiced multiple times.
When his big moment came, he pulled out the notes and looked at them so to get it perfect. And then he looked at Connie and completely froze. We all watched him try to talk, his eyes welling up as he took in the view of his special partner for the rest of his life, and finally he barely squeaked out, “I love you.”
That was it— the notes of what he wanted to say were gone, and one of the most memorable wedding hugs ever seen ensued.
Tracy made it through the rest of the service just fine, occasionally welling up as many of you know he did when the times become emotional. He wore his emotions on his sleeve, especially when it had to do with something he cared about such as a friend, one of his Shar Peis or anything to do with the kids at Camp Quality.
As the ceremony wound down, Tracy became more and more the outgoing Tracy we have all witnessed. So, when he was told he could kiss the bride, he hugged and kissed Connie as they stood on the engine hatch of the boat. Then, in front of the entire wedding group of guests, grabbed her by the ass and squeezed more than once, and for more than just a couple seconds.
That day said it all about the guy, and it is a fond boating memory we will never forget.
Related story: Tracy Nemecek: Boyne Thunder’s O.F. Remembered