Couple With Down Syndrome Proves True Love Exists After 22 Years Of Marriage

by Ileana Paules-Bronet
Ileana is the Senior Editor of Branded Content at Wild Sky Media. She grew up in upstate New York and Oregon and now lives in Queens, NY. Ileana graduated from Skidmore College with a degree in sociology. After graduating, she attended the Columbia Publishing Course in New York City, then worked as in marketing at Oxford University Press. Since transitioning to editorial, she has written for BuzzFeed, HuffPost, and Woman's World. She has also worked for local newspapers and magazines in upstate New York. In her free time, you can find Ileana watching Law & Order: SVU, eating ice cream, and spending time with her dog.

In the early 1990s, Tommy Pilling met the girl of his dreams. Her name was Maryanne, and like him, she had Down syndrome.

The two dated for 18 months, then Tommy decided he wanted to pop the question. He approached Maryanne’s mom, Linda, to ask for her blessing. He presented her with the toy ring he’d gotten from a vending machine.

Linda was thrilled and immediately said yes, but wanted Tommy to be able to properly propose to her daughter, so she brought him to the ring store.

When Tommy asked Maryanne to marry her, she didn’t hesitate to agree. He and Maryanne knew they wanted to spend the rest of their lives together.

When they got engaged, though, they were hit with tons of criticism, as they were thought to be the first couple with Down syndrome to get married.

Despite the criticism, Maryanne and Tommy did indeed get married at a beautiful church in the U.K. in 1995.

[H/T: Daily Mail]

tommy and maryanne

In an interview with Daily Mail, Maryanne’s sister Lindi spoke about the couple.

She said, “The day Maryanne met Tommy, she came home with the biggest smile on her face. She couldn’t stop talking about him and asked if he could come for dinner.”

maryanne and tommy

When mom Linda brought Tommy to buy the ring, however, people were very critical of both her and Tommy.

Lindi explained, “She received a lot of flak at the time for letting them get married, but she insisted it was their decision.”

down syndrome wedding

She continued: “Maryanne had dreamed about a big white wedding since she was a little girl, and that’s exactly what she had. It was a beautiful day.”

The pictures of their wedding prove just that. It looks like it was a very special day for not only Maryanne and Tommy, but also their families.

maryanne wedding dress

Maryanne wore a stunning white ball gown and a tiara. She truly looked like a princess.

Her groom wore a white button-down with a tie and a bright-blue vest.

The two look absolutely in love on their wedding day, clearly thrilled to be tying the knot.

tommy and maryanne now

Now, 22 years later, Maryanne and Tommy are still happily married.

Everyone who criticized them for getting married should kick themselves — these two have a better marriage than most people can hope for.

tommy and maryanne now

Lindi was so inspired by her sister and brother-in-law that she decided to set up a Facebook page for them.

She’s shared current photos of the couple, as well as pictures from throughout their 22 years of marriage.

down syndrome couple now

Since the Facebook page was set up, people from all over the world have wished the happy couple all the best.

One person wrote, “You are a beautiful couple <3 many more years together.”

Another said, “I don’t normally write on pages but I’ve just read your story and would like to say you are both an inspiration to everyone. Love comes in all forms and yours should be celebrated not criticised and judged. Wishing you both many more happy years together in the future xx.”

down syndrome couple maryanne and tommy

This incredible couple not only proves that true love still exists, but that it comes in all shapes and sizes.

If you think everyone deserves love, happiness, and respect, please SHARE this beautiful story!