“Layne and I’s lives were intertwined at an early age. I moved to Waynoka, Oklahoma in 1st grade. We attended school field trips together, were in 4-H together, and later FFA. When I was a freshman in high school (2010), Layne asked me to go on a date with him to “fifth quarter” after the football game. I was so nervous that the cute, junior running back was asking me on a date! At first I said no, but I gave in and we were inseparable ever since. We loved doing everything together. We ran track together, gave speeches together, showed animals together and more. Layne even worked for my parents. Wherever one of us was, you were sure to find the other. Fast forward 6 years to April 15, 2016. That is when Layne took me to our favorite fishing spot on my family’s land and asked me to spend forever with him.
I thought I was the luckiest girl in the world, but if you looked at his huge smile and bright, shining eyes locked on me, you could see that he thought he was the luckiest guy in the whole world. This past year has been full of wedding and life planning. My house is full of all my wedding decorations just waiting for my wedding day that will never come. Layne and I had planned our lives out and even bought cattle together. We said it is pretty serious when you buy cattle together. We knew what land we would eventually build our house on and even our future children’s names. Big plans and big dreams that we will never get to carry out together.
Many would say Layne and I had a fairytale kind of love. We had a love that many spend their whole life trying to find. It was patient, kind and unconditional. I will forever miss how Layne always looked at me with such love and adoration. We understood each other in a way that no one else could. Layne and I both attended OSU, and while we didn’t live together, we spent every day together. We worked out together, made lunch and dinner together, did homework together, and just spent time together hanging out, watching TV, and so much more. We both loved reading, learning, traveling and agriculture. We pushed and motivated each other to be the best we could be. Most importantly, we loved and accepted each other for who we were. Layne was a man of God, uplifting, intelligent, driven, compassionate and strong. Luckily, we knew how much we meant to one another because we told each other every day. He made me feel loved, wanted, secure and confident. There will never be anyone else like my dear Layne.
Layne was killed in a car accident on February 5, 2017, just 4 months before our wedding. I’m devastated that I don’t get to marry my best friend, but I take comfort in the fact that I will be reunited with him in Heaven one day.
I had a dream I was wandering around in my wedding dress completely lost and helpless with tears spilling down my face, blurring my vision. My vision cleared a bit and I saw my sweet Layne walking towards me with his radiant smile. He wrapped his arms around me and said, ‘Baby girl, quit crying! You look beautiful. You are so strong. I know you can do this!!’ Earlier that night I had cried myself to sleep because all I wanted was a chance to marry my best friend.. and then I had that dream and it gave me such peace. When I saw this picture Holly Gannett captured, I instantly thought of that dream and tears streamed down my face. I’m thankful for this picture. I’ll cherish it forever.”
What a blessing these photos are to this beautiful bride. Her story is proof that the Lord’s Peace is one that surpasses all understanding.
My heart breaks for Hannah and all of their family and friends. I can’t imagine what she’s going through, but I wholeheartedly admire her strength and drive to remember Layne through the memories, and encourage others through Christ’s love.