5 Couples Who Dealt With a Natural Disaster During Their Wedding

Firefighter: Shutterstock / TheKnot.com Shutterstock

It’s one thing to have uninvited guests or bridesmaid drama ruin a wedding, but it’s quite another to have a dust storm interrupt your vows or a house fire inspire you to get married much faster than you planned. Storms, earthquakes and fires aren’t quite the disasters that you plan for on your wedding day, especially when most brides-to-be are just hoping for nice weather.

We’ve rounded up five couples who had a natural disaster interrupt their engagement shots and vows — and even made one couple get married in their sweatpants.

1. Connecticut couple Megan Hunley and Brian Osborne’s home went up in flames in a devastating house fire earlier this week. However, one of the things that didn’t burn was the engagement ring that Brian had for Megan, found by a firefighter in its charred box. Brian proposed to Megan on the spot, and the couple got married on Tuesday in front of their damaged home. They were also wearing the T-shirts and sweatpants they escaped the fire in as a reminder that all they need is each other. Tissues, anyone?

2. An anonymous couple had just said their “I dos” when a fire broke out at their 108-year-old ceremony location, the Lakeview Pavilion, in Foxborough, Massachusetts, earlier this month. A carelessly tossed cigarette sparked the fire, but fortunately, none of the 100 guests were injured and everyone escaped the building in time.

3. In 2011, Jennifer and Gus Luna’s wedding was interrupted by a gigantic oncoming dust storm in Florence, Arizona. Ironically enough, the couple had incorporated a sand ceremony into their vows, and the officiant had to hurry the process along so the couple and their guests wouldn’t choke on tons of dirt.

4. Barb McCuen and Dave Jones’s 2010 wedding date in Washington, DC was up against a big, brewing blizzard. Think: People calling to cancel at the last minute and the bride’s transportation getting stuck in the snow. However, the ceremony started only 10 minutes late and 90 guests still showed up and read this quote printed on their programs: “Kindness is like snow; it beautifies everything it covers.”

5. During the disastrous May 12, 2008 earthquake in China, photographer Wang Qiang was photographing a few newlywed couples wearing suits and wedding dresses near Bailu in front of a century-old church. When the quake hit, the church collapsed almost immediately, but thankfully, everyone at the shoot was fine — albeit dusty and shaken.

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Escort cards are extremely easy to personalize and an excellent way to bring in your wedding day colors -- from calligraphed seating cards set atop a textured linen to apples tagged with each guest's name or small personalized bundles of lavender tied off with string. Other ways to display escort cards: Pin them to a clothesline, post them on a board covered in color-coordinated ribbon, or incorporate them into your cocktail hour using personalized stirrers tagged with guests' names.
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