A woman from Loogootee, Indiana still decided to go through her wedding day photo shoot despite the fact that her fiance had already gone 10 months before.
Jessica Padgett and her fiance Kendall Murphy, a volunteer firefighter and basketball coach at Barr-Reeve High School, were all set to marry this September 2018. Things took a tragic turn when Murphy perished last November after he was hit by a car driven by a fellow firefighter while responding to an accident near their home, according to Global News on Oct. 8.
Murphy was killed instantly, leaving his bride-to-be Padgett without him. Before his death, the couple have already booked photographer Mandi Knepp of Loving Life Photography to take their wedding photos. After Murphy died, his mother and Padgett decided to still push through with their booking for Sept. 29, the day of their wedding.
Knepp shared photos from the wedding photo shoot last Oct. 5, one of which showed Padgett kneeling before the grave of her fiance's while wearing her wedding gown.
In another photo shared by Padgett on Facebook, a photo of her wearing her wedding dress can be seen. She held in her hands Murphy's boots that he wore everyday, while Murphy was edited into the picture to look as if he were standing right next to her.
"I'm kind of blessed that I did it, because different people have been telling me how they have been struggling and seeing my pictures kind of brought strength and comfort," Padgett was quoted as saying.
"I'm really glad I ended up doing it because I'm not only helping myself and my family, but I'm helping others that I don't know who are going through a hard time and a grieving process as well."
She also shared that she had been dreading the wedding day for a very long time: "Now I can look back at those memories that Mandi took, and the ways I got to honour Kendall and be with Kendall and see all the support I had that day."
Padgett and her family also recently visited the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation for its 37th annual memorial weekend. In pictures she posted on Oct. 7, Padgett and her loved ones can be seen wearing matching red shirts that had "Kendall Murphy" printed on the front.
"What [an] emotional, amazing weekend this was! This foundation not only honoured my Kendall, but also took us in as a family," she shared. "This wasn't what we wanted in the end, but at least we know we will never be alone, we have all become one big supporting family! You will forever be in our hearts #616."