Serena Williams and Alexis Ohanian got married in New Orleans on November 2017 and the party looked like it was not far off from a fairytale. Although photos show all smiles and happy faces, there was one special moment that was missing and it was Serena’s father giving her away on the aisle. Richard Williams was set to do the deed, but one hour before showtime he had to back out and Serena understood.
“He was in New Orleans, he had a suit, and I know he was really excited,” Serena said in her HBO documentary, Being Serena. “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.’”
The tennis all-star took the news lightly and 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 explained how most daughters probably wouldn’t react the same way, but she understands the health struggles he’s had in the last few years. Although he’s healthier now, he doesn’t feel like himself and doesn’t feel like he’s “perfect.”
“If he doesn’t want to be up there in front of a lot of people, I completely understand,” she added. “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,” she said.