A heartbroken bride got dressed in her white gown on what was supposed to be her wedding day and went to her fiancé’s grave.
Jessica Padgett was supposed to marry Kendall James Murphy on September 29, but her husband-to-be died in a car crash in November last year.
Kendall was a firefighter in Montgomery, Indiana, and was responding to a call alongside his colleague, Colby Blake, as well as another firefighter on the day he died.
Kendall arrived at the scene in his own car, which he parked before getting out and heading to the car’s back door to retrieve his protective clothing.
Blake, Kendall’s colleague, also drove to the scene, but according to the Daily Mail he allegedly had a blood alcohol level of .21 per cent at the time – more than double the legal limit of .08.
Blake rear-ended a truck as he drove, but continued driving. As Kendall went to get his clothes, he was hit by Blake’s car and was killed instantly.
Almost a year later, on the day they’d planned to start their lives together, Jessica went to Kendall’s grave in her wedding gown.
The bride posed for photos with Kendall’s boots, his firefighting gear and his gravestone, as well as with family who accompanied her to the grave.
The photos were taken by Loving Life Photography and were posted on Facebook, where the album has since been shared over 22,000 times.
In one of the images, Jessica stands holding her fiancé’s boots while a ghost-like image of him is photoshopped to be standing next to her.
Loving Life Photography captioned the image:
She made broken look beautiful and strong look invincible. She walked with the Universe on her shoulders and made it look like a pair of wings.
The maid of honour and best man gave speeches by the grave, before the family lit paper lanterns.
The National Fallen Firefighters Association honoured the firefighter on their website, writing:
Kendall was a selfless man of God who loved spending time with family and friends.
He had a true servant’s heart and captivating personality that would light up any room.
His wittiness would make anyone laugh and have him making friends in no time. He didn’t know a stranger.
The tribute continued:
The day, November 10, 2017, will forever be etched in our hearts. It started as any day would. That evening, a call came in for an accident less than a mile from his house. Of course, Kendall responded as normal.
He was exiting his personal vehicle when another responding firefighter drove up on the scene and hit Kendall, killing him instantly.
Kendall started with the Montgomery Volunteer Fire Department in June 2016, following his father and grandfather’s footsteps, giving the Murphy family three generations of active firefighters.
Kendall’s case has still not been set for trial.
Jessica honoured her husband-to-be beautifully on the intended day of their wedding. Our thoughts are with Kendall’s family and friends at this difficult time.
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Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.