Bette Midler, known for her indelible voice and impressive acting skills, was already a Grammy, Golden Globe and Tony winner when she met the 35-year-old Martin von Haselberg in 1984.
Then 39, the star of The Rose locked down her relationship with the Argentinian man and popped the question after only six weeks of dating.
The pair eloped to Las Vegas and wed at the Starlight Chapel with Elvis officiating their nuptials.
“My wedding was two people – my husband and me – and, of course, the Elvis impersonator that married us,” the Hocus Pocus star recalled about the 02:00 am wedding that cost only $45 and a wardrobe change for her husband-to-be.
The “spur of the moment” wedding turned out to be a great decision. Only two years later, the couple welcomed their only daughter Sophie, now 36, an actor whose credits include Woody Allen’s 2015 film Irrational Man.
But up until a couple of years ago, the singer of “The Rose” and her artist husband, known for his roles in the 1980’s The Kipper Kids, had no photos to look back on their magical wedding event in Vegas.
Then, after more than three decades of marriage, a surprise arrived in the mail.
“Apparently, there was a photographer there,” Midler explained on a 2021 episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live. “When the Starlight Chapel closed its doors about five years ago, they sent us the pictures. We had never seen the pictures [before].”
The years following that day haven’t always been easy.
Celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary next year, the “Wind Beneath my Wings” singer revealed that the commitment she shares with von Haselberg once heavily hinged on compromise, and their determination to be the best parents to Sophie.