Miss Meredith O’Neal Bates and Mr. John Baxter McWhirter were united in marriage at 5:30 p.m. Aug. 5, 2017, at the Highlands Country Club in Highlands, N.C. The bride is the daughter of Mrs. Rosemary and Mr. James Emile Bates Jr. of Gainesville. The groom is the son of Mrs. Rae and Mr. Thomas Frederick McWhirter Jr. of Atlanta.
The Rev. Dr. William L. Coates Jr. performed the ceremony. A string quartet presented a program of wedding music. Mrs. Abby Hawkins read sentences of scripture.
The bride was presented in marriage by her father. The bride’s sister-in-law Mrs. Brooke Bates of Braselton and the bride’s friend Mrs. Loree Anne Paradise of Prairie Village, Kan., were matrons of honor. Bridesmaids were the bride’s friends Mrs. Carolyn Stribling of Gainesville, Miss Callie Mayfield of Athens, Miss Miranda Parks of Greenville, S.C., Miss Suzanne Bagwell of Atlanta, Miss Abbey Holley of Atlanta, Mrs. Melissa White of Atlanta, Mrs. Lucy Brown of Atlanta and Mrs. Caroline Flexer of St. Simons Island and the groom’s sister Mrs. Allison Cochran of Kyllburg, Germany.
The groom’s father was the best man. Groomsmen were the bride’s brothers Mr. Jay Bates of Braselton and Mr. Daniel Bates of Atlanta, the groom’s brother-in-law Capt. Ben Cochran of Kyllburg, Germany, and the groom’s friends Mr. Britton Smith of St. Simons Island, Mr. Andrew Barclay of Dalton, Dr. Patton Pennington of Shreveport, La., Mr. James Porter of Nashville, Tenn., Mr. Mitch Keister of Atlanta and Mr. Robert Kryder of Washington, D.C.
Crevolyn Wiley and Judy Morris were the wedding coordinators.
The bride wore a diamond cluster ring given to her by her late maternal grandmother, Lois Little Hope. Attached to the bridal bouquet was a French lace handkerchief that was purchased by the bride’s mother in Amboise, France, during a trip she and the bride made to the Loire Valley in 2003. The bride wore a diamond bracelet belonging to her mother and in her shoe carried a sixpence that was given to her by her late maternal grandmother.
The groom’s parents hosted a rehearsal dinner at Half-Mile Farm in Highlands, N.C., on the eve of the wedding.
The bride’s parents hosted a reception at Highlands Country Club in Highlands, N.C., following the ceremony.
Following a honeymoon to Antigua in the West Indies, the couple reside in Atlanta.