First off I wanted to thank all who participated and lead off with a bit of a fishy tale….

I had to find impartial judges for this contest.  I’m too sentimental to choose a winner when all of the stories are so sweet. I loved every one of them!

The Contest Judges on their Wedding Day!

land gPatrick and I enlisted a couple we knew with one of the most fun stories ever. Here’s just a quick peak into theirs. (And YES, that is Sarah Palin performing the ceremony.)

On a fishing trip in Alaska with friends they decided to go ahead and get married. No one at home knew, least of all their grown children.  Upon arriving home Lynn was super excited about the 35 pound salmon she caught and went on and on.

“I caught a huge fish! You should see this thing! Oh, Yeah, and we got married. This fish is huge! It was 35 pounds!”


After much deliberation by the judges, I received the following email:

We reviewed all the entries and finally narrowed it down to a winner.  All entries submitted were well written and great stories.  Like us, you never know when or where you’ll meet your soul mate/best friend.   We took this assignment very seriously and selected Abby and Rocky as the winners.

Congratulations to all the amazing couples and “Happy Valentines Day”!

Gary and Lynn


Congrats to Abby and Rocky!  Read on to see their love story!

IMG_2213Abby and I met through a mutual employer in 2003. I called to correct my spelling of my name on my paperwork before I started. I was concerned I would not be paid on time with the spelling error so I was calling to correct it. Abby didn’t care for the guy on the phone and even told the director “he’s an a#$”.

After starting work at the therapy clinic, Abby and I got along just fine. We enjoyed each other’s twisted humor at work. She was like the younger sister I never had. I met Abby’s husband and Jimmy and I became good friends as well. Abby and Jimmy had a son just a few months younger than my son. When Jimmy brought him into the clinic, he was a fun kid to tease and play with.

Abby had a passion for the physical therapy field but was only a physical therapy technician. A fellow therapist and I talked Abby into going back to school to become a physical therapist assistant. She did so successfully and worked at another clinic since there wasn’t an opening for her as a therapist at the current employer. We kept in touch with calls and meeting at the football games on Friday’s.

I had gotten married at a young age and didn’t know what I know now. J I did take marriage seriously and stuck with it “waiting for the good part to start”. Years went by and I had taken a job as a safety guy at a new employer. I started the process of filing for divorce after several shaky years. I called Jimmy and Abby in mid-January 2008 to tell them of my divorce so they didn’t hear it by rumor mill.

Two weeks later, on the morning of February 1, 2008 I received a call that Jimmy had unexpectedly passed. He and I were close in age and had boys the same age. I just couldn’t imagine what Abby and her son would do. My son was bouncing back and forth with his mother and me during the summer, so when I was solo, I would go help Abby keep up with yard work or any home maintenance. I rarely fixed any meals at my house so Abby would make to go plates out of leftovers. I would typically make just sit at her house visiting with Abby rather than taking them to my empty house.

After a few months, I would ask Abby to take the boys out for dinner to get out of the house. We made several dinner outings together with the boys. I had a friend tell me during one outing with the Abby and the boys, “I don’t know what you guys are feeling, but I think God has a great plan here.” As time went on, I started feeling odd with Abby because my “buddy” was awkward to hang around with because I started having feelings for her. I really could see myself with her for life, but I never was willing to give up my friendship and scare her away.

One evening when my son and I went to visit with Abby and her son, I told Abby “we need to talk”. I told her I didn’t want to screw up a friendship, but I felt more towards her. She and I talked about the “elephant in the room” that had been standing there for a while.

On April 25, 2009 Abby and I got married with only our boys family and a couple friends present. We had a very simple wedding to celebrate a beautiful start to a new chapter of our lives. I thank God for the lady he brought into my life. She is not only my buddy and best friend, but also the lady I want to grow old with, and see life through her eyes. She is a wonderful mother to her son and also a great step mother to mine. The song “God Bless the Broken Road” fits our lives well. I no longer am waiting for the “good part to start” in my life because it has.