Talk about a long wedding train – Groom uses unique ride to stand beside his bride

When most opt for a fancy limousine or an exotic sports car to travel to their venue, one husband-to-be and his groomsmen decided GO was the best way to arrive in style.

Before the wedding bells, came the whistles.

And instead of a single wedding carriage getting him to his bride, on Chris Drew’s big day, he counted on a lineup of the most powerful carriages around.

On Saturday (June 22), he and his five groomsmen headed to Scarborough’s Guildwood Inn, where he would tie the knot with his soon to be wife, Farah Tamachi.

But there’s another love story at play here.

Chris Drew, dressed in his finest, exits a GO train.

Chris Drew exits a GO train on his way to his wedding ceremony.  (Photo by Nitish Bissonauth) 

Drew and his bride planned a traditional Indian wedding and typically the groom relies on a horse to get to his venue. In this case, he put his trust in a 4000 – horsepower GO train.

“Of course I would take the train – it’s not even a question,” said Drew, a Toronto urban planner.

“I couldn’t picture myself getting to my wedding any other way and I didn’t want to knock my turban off my head coming in and out of a vehicle.”

Drew has been a transit advocate and a train enthusiast his whole life. When most kids would ask to go to the movies or Disneyland, he wanted to watch trains go by. Growing up, he took transit everywhere he went – determined to make sure his wedding day was no different.

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Chris talking to his groomsmen about how he always dreamt of going to his wedding on a GO train. (Photo by Nitish Bissonauth) 

“I’ve never been enamored with fancy limos or rides,” he said. “I’ve enjoyed trains and transit my whole life.”

Rail has a special connection to both his family and now with his life partner.

His grandfather worked for CP Rail for 40 years and lived right next to the tracks he worked on.

Growing up, Drew was fascinated by the work of his grandfather, which sparked his love for rail and trains. It’s also what helped him connect to Farah.

Chris and Farah are shown on a Toronto street.

Chris and Farah took transit to all their first dates. They look forward to continuing that tradition as a married couple. (Photo by Revel Photography)

“Public transit has always been an integral part to our love story. From the very beginning, it was something that bonded the pair of us together,” he explained.

“Both of us prefer taking transit over the stress of driving and we love talking about the design of different public transit systems around the world.”

The pair met at a New Year’s Eve party in 2011, and ever since, transit has been part of the foundation of their relationship. In fact, the couple took GO transit to see each other when they first started dating.

“Still to this day, we love exploring different areas of the city by transit,” he said. “We’ve gone on many exciting adventures together, visited family near and far, and travelled to many places together.

“Having that ‘us time’ together on transit has been at the core of what makes these days and nights so memorable.”

Chris and his groomsmen talk and laugh as they head to their train.

Chris and his groomsmen walk through Toronto’s Union Station. (Photo by Nitish Bissonauth) 

The pair decided to incorporate transit as part of their special day and even picked the venue based on transit accessibility.

“That’s my Chris,” said Farah, unsurprised by her soon-to-be husband’s choice of transportation.

“I knew that’s exactly how Chris would want to get there on the wedding day without him even saying it.”

It was a huge factor in their decision, especially since the venue is a few minutes from the Guildwood GO Station.

That’s where he and his groomsmen headed; starting off down the Great Hall in Union Station to GO platform 24, in full Indian attire. They turned heads and were the best dressed on a weekend ride.

They tapped their PRESTO cards, walked up the stairs and onto the platform where they headed towards the accessibility coach – and marriage beyond.

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Joyful as ever, Chris danced along the way to the platform to catch the 1:13 pm Lakeshore East Train. (Photo by Nitish Bissonauth) 

Drew entered with a smile. He had done this 25-minute commute on the Lakeshore East line countless times before – but never to the same end.

“As the train is accelerating, so is my heart beat,” he noted. “Memories about my childhood and trains are just racing through my head. This is a special moment.

“I think it’s very fitting that I’m doing this on a train. My grandfather would have thought this was neat. I’m heading to my wedding using the rail he worked on his whole life to service.”

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The icing on the cake; Chris gets to make a special announcement to the entire train – Next stop, his marriage. (Photo by Nitish Bissonauth) 

Drew is hoping to do a honeymoon in the near future – one that will certainly involve the UP Express.

“Our dream is to do an around the world transit tour,” he said.

“We are two adventure-loving, thrill seeking people who love to travel. We would love to visit the world’s best transit hubs.”

Drew is looking forward to his next stop, after being able to brag about a pretty impressive wedding train.

Story written by Nitish Bissonauth, Metrolinx Bilingual Spokesperson, Media Relations and Issues Specialist with files from James Burchell, Community Relations and Issues Specialist.