Hurricane Matthew impacted so many weddings in Georgia and the Carolinas in October 2016 – numerous ones, especially in the low country were cancelled, moved, or postponed. It was a difficult thing for countless couples, and behind the scenes vendors were scrambling, desperate to make the dreams still come to fruition. I was up a little further north that weekend, in Virginia for Kelly & Jason’s wedding, saturated to the hilt. While I dodged the worst of it that weekend, I went home that night thinking of how my beloved low-country was faring and knowing things were intensifying. My next wedding was set for the following weekend on Sea Island, Georgia.
In the following days the storm worsened and left a dent in the South. Some venues were so damaged that they were closed indefinitely, and road-systems blocked or completely flooded. As things subsided by mid-week. I wasn’t able to reach family by phone, and offered support to friends who were being kept from returning to their homes. In the middle of it all, I was in contact with Sarah and Eddie as we tried to determine if Sea Island would even be open by the time of their wedding a few days away. “We’re getting married this weekend, no matter what” she told me, and even though highway 95 was completely blocked and impassable, I made plans (booking a flight 2 days before leaving) to get myself to Georgia. What was usually a drive, became a 7 hour journey through multiple airports and a rental car, but I made it in plenty of time to see that Sea Island would be opened back up to the public, with only hours to spare.
As if the stress of it all needed to be worsened, the forecast was set for rain (completely separate from the hurricane a few days prior). It poured down on Sea Island that day, saturating the area that was at its limit already. As Sarah put on her dress and we headed to do portraits, the rain didn’t show signs of letting up (and my weather app didn’t have any good news). Somehow though, as if it were a reward to this sweet couple for their dedication to make it all happen no matter what – the skies cleared.