Swinging Bridge has lock on love for couples vowing eternal devo - WLBT.com - Jackson, MS

Swinging Bridge has lock on love for couples vowing eternal devotion

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT

A Byram hideaway tucked beneath the trees along the Pearl River is quickly becoming a hot spot for lovers, but it's not what you would think.

The bridge over the Pearl River has a lock on love for couples vowing eternal devotion.

Justin Caudill and Charlene Piner of Pearl recently became engaged and Tuesday afternoon made the trek to Byram's Swinging River Bridge to profess their undying love.

"I think it should spread," Justin Caudill said. "More people should just get in a romantic spirit again."

The symbolic gesture is patterned after a spot for sweethearts on Paris' Pont des Arts bridge that at one point was crammed with than 700 thousand locks.

Caudill looked back on how he and Charlene Piner met and fell in love. 

"When we were 15 years old, we dated on and off," Caudill said. "Like I said I moved away, she moved away, and just 15 years later we hooked back up and it's just meant to happen."

"These are my two boys, Piner said. "And I want them to see that, you know, there is love and that momma can find the right man for her that will love her the right way and I want them to grow up and see that."

The metal symbols decorating the railings are filled with names and initials written and etched on steel.

Byram Mayor Richard White has been visiting this bridge since he was a boy, biking here from south Jackson.

"My wife's been passed," White said. "She passed about 5 years ago. I wished I had thought of bringing me one down here."

White went on to say, "When you start having six locks on one place you know that shows you the families come up here. There's something they can all come up here throughout their lives and see these locks. There were some people that said maybe that it might be too much weight for the bridge. I promise you this bridge can hold a lot of weight and we'll be watching."

Bo James, of Mize, crossed this bridge when it was open to traffic, and brought Venus Wilson, of Sylva North Carolina, to this romantic spot for the first time.

"I think it's an awesome idea," Wilson said. "It's really beautiful."

"Love is still real man," Caudill said. "And there's still hope out there for everybody."

Caudill and Piner, placed their lock on the bridge Tuesday and will be getting married in October.

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