SAN ANTONIO – Soon after moving from the Texas coast to enjoy downtown living in San Antonio, Ken and Nita Shaver hung a single padlock on a fence overlooking the River Walk.
Having seen photos of the famous Love Lock Bridge in Paris, Nita Shaver said they decided, “We’re downtowners, and we love our neighborhood, and we thought that San Antonio needs Love Locks.”
The Shavers said they placed the first lock on May 25, 2012, on their 38th wedding anniversary, but the first in their adopted city.
Now their lock is buried beneath hundreds and hundreds of other locks hung on a chain link fence just off Main Plaza and Kallison Walk.
On Tuesday, city crews will begin moving the lock-laden fence to the Kallison Walk Bridge close by. Repairs are planned on the walkway at the current location.
“I’m tickled pink that the city sees there is value in this,” Shaver said.
The Love Lock Bridge downtown has now become a tourist attraction often visited by honeymooners and couples wanting to leave enduring symbols of their love.
The retired educators, who first met in eighth grade, have now been married 46 years.
Nita Shaver said it’s not only become a family Christmas tradition to visit the Love Lock Bridge, their seven grandsons have even left their own locks.
“We came out and we hung them as a group,” she said.
What began with one padlock, Shaver said has become a symbol of love.
“I think it’s a beautiful statement that people are drawn to something that expresses love,” she said.