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Fact Check-Photo does not show paralyzed groom being held up by groomsmen

Users are sharing a photograph of a bride and a groom with four groomsmen behind him and claiming that the groomsmen are holding the groom up because he is paralyzed. Other photographs from the wedding show this is not true. The groomsmen’s pose appears to be a fraternity tradition.

Examples can be seen here and here .

The text on one post reads: “I JUST WANTED TO SHARE THIS POWERFUL AND AMAZING PICTURE WITH YOU AGAIN...THE GROOM IS PARALYZED AND HIS BESTMEN HELD HIM UP TO KISS HIS BEAUTIFUL BRIDE..SO POWERFUL !”

This claim was debunked by fact checker Snopes here in 2017, who traced it back to a Dec. 12, 2016 reddit post here , with the title: “Groomsman hold up paralyzed groom for his wedding”.

The original photograph was posted by the bride, Rita Shaw, on her Instagram page here with the caption “Happy Founders day to the good Bruhz #RQQ”

Comments on the post include: “Everyone is saying ur man is paralyzed”, “Girlllllll, this picture is everywhere on twitter..” and “This photo is on Fb. Saying that this man is paralyzed smh what is wrong with the Internet.”

Other photographs from the wedding where the couple are standing and dancing together without assistance can be seen here and here . It is clear the groom is not paralyzed.

This is also true in other photos, visible here , here and here .

A Google search of “RQQ” reveals that the letters are associated with Omega Psi Phi, a historically African American fraternity founded in 1911 at Howard University ( https ://www.google.com/search?q=rqq&rlz=1C1GCEB_enUS891US891&oq=rqq&aqs=chrome.0.69i59l2j0l3j46j69i61j69i60.996j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8 , oppf.org/about-omega/ ).

Videos from different chapters of the fraternity show a similar stance with linked arms at 0:05 here , 14:29 here and 8:10 here .

Fact checkers PolitiFact and AFP have also debunked the claim here and here .

VERDICT

False. The groom in the photo is not being held up by his groomsmen because he is paralyzed. The stance appears to be a fraternity tradition.

This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work  here  .         

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