Cheryl Burke has a sweet tribute planned for her late father as she walks down the aisle to marry actor Matthew Lawrence. The longtime Dancing With the Stars pro dancer, who lost her father, Stephen Burke, last March, told E! News she plans to incorporate a special tribute to her dad at her wedding ceremony and at her reception.
“I’m going to have an empty seat for my dad with a picture of us [during the ceremony].”
While Burke won’t be able to dance a traditional “Daddy’s Little Girl”-style father-daughter dance at her wedding ceremony, she will dance to the music of her late father’s favorite crooner.
“He loved Frank Sinatra. So I’m probably going to want to dance to one of Frank’s songs that he loved.”
Although Cheryl Burke’s beloved father passed away two months before she got engaged, Cheryl’s future husband thought ahead to make sure her dad was part of the proposal plans even if he couldn’t get his blessing to marry the two-time Dancing With the Stars champ.
According to Us Weekly, last May, Matthew Lawrence proposed to Cheryl Burke on her 34th birthday with the same diamond that the pro dancer’s father gave to her mother years ago. The 38-year-old Boy Meets World alum enlisted the help of his mom, Donna, as well as Cheryl’s mother, Sherri, and jeweler XIV Karats to have the special stone reset with additional diamonds.
Six months after her engagement to Lawrence, Cheryl Burke reflected on her rollercoaster year. In an emotional Instagram tribute last December, Burke wrote that she will never forget 2018, the year she lost her father and became engaged to Matthew Lawrence.
In the emotional post, Burke also wrote that her father is always in her mind and in her heart.
“There’s not a day that goes by when I don’t think about my Dad. I have never been through so much pain, heartache and sleepless nights since he passed away. When I got that call in March, a call that I’d never wish upon anyone to receive, my life changed forever.”
Cheryl also revealed that through “every second” of her heartbreak, the person standing by her side was Matthew, which solidified the fact that he is the man she wants by her side forever.
“The way that he was there for me when I lost my dad, and has shown up for me every day since, solidified that he is the person I am meant to spend the rest of my life with,” Burke wrote of her thoughtful fiancé.
While her wedding day will be both magical and emotional, Burke added that she knows her father would want her to move forward and live a happy life with her soon-to-be-husband.
Cheryl Burke and Matthew Lawrence have not announced their exact wedding date to fans, but it appears their big day will be coming very soon. The pro dancer was recently feted at a bridal shower hosted by her matron of honor, Dancing With the Stars alum Leah Remini, and the bride and groom-to-be have posted videos of cake tastings and other wedding day teasers.