Newlyweds to head home as wife recovers from beating

Following his wife's successful facial surgery Tuesday, the new husband of a Beaufort native beaten in a downtown hotel the night before their wedding says the couple is ready to return home and put the attack behind them.

"We plan to travel back to Charlotte this evening in order to start our new lives together," Michael Williamson wrote Wednesday in an e-mail.

Rhyan Mazur-Williamson underwent an hour-long procedure at The Facial Surgery Center in Charleston to repair multiple fractures to her nose and face that she suffered when beaten April 18 by an unknown assailant in a cottage at the Beaufort Inn.

Williamson said his wife was doing well following the procedure.

The couple were to be married April 19 at Sea Island Presbyterian Church on Lady's Island, but the attack forced them to call off the ceremony. They were instead married in the backyard of the St. Helena Island home of the bride's parents after she was released from Beaufort Memorial Hospital.

Williamson said his wife will return to Charleston next week for a follow-up appointment and undergo plastic surgery in about two months to allow surgeons to smooth out any bumps or imperfections in her nose.

Meanwhile, the reward fund to help catch Mazur-Williamson's attacker grew Wednesday when Dick Stewart, owner of the Beaufort Inn, announced he is offering $2,500 for any information leading to the arrest and conviction of the assailant.

"We have always sought to respect the privacy and dignity of individuals that have suffered trauma so that the healing process can begin, and we have done so in this instance," Stewart said in a news release. "We have been cooperating fully with the police and are offering this reward in an effort to assist in identifying and convicting the responsible parties."

Friends of the couple set up a separate fund last week in the hopes of a raising $10,000 for information leading to an arrest.