On the day tennis champion, Serena Williams married Reddit co-founder, Alexis Ohanian, she walked down the aisle alone though her father is alive and they have a cordial relationship. She has now explained why that was the case.
The mother-of-one said that just one hour before her wedding on 16 November 2017, she received a text from her father, Richard Williams, saying he couldn’t do it. In her new HBO documentary called Being Serena, the tennis superstar said her father and former longtime coach told her in the message that he didn’t feel comfortable giving her away.
Serena explains in the documentary: “He was in New Orleans, he had a suit, and I know he was really excited.
“But then he wrote me and said, ‘Serena, I don’t want you to be mad at me, but I just can’t walk you down the aisle. I’m not myself anymore. I’m just too nervous.'”
But Serena wasn’t angry with her dad and didn’t panic, instead, she remained calm and completely supportive of his decision.
She replied: “Daddy, it’s okay, if you don’t want to come to the wedding at all, that’s okay too. I’m not going to be upset with you about it, so I don’t want you to be upset about it.”
Serena added that some people may have reacted differently, but she knows the struggles her dad, who suffered a stroke in 2016, had been through over the last few years. She said what was important was that her close family understood their bond.
If he doesn’t want to be up there in front of a lot of people, I completely understand. Look, when we first came on the scene, there were a lot of people who didn’t get him.
I don’t think a lot of them wanted to get him. I don’t think a lot of him could have anyway. Our family knows what we have.
We just want each other to be happy. That’s what matters. I don’t think anything could ever change that.