The boyfriend of an Arizona woman was tragically murdered nine months before they were meant to walk down the hall, but that did not stop the future bride from having wedding photos with her deceased love.
Debbie Gerlach was expecting November 11 when she would marry her "best friend" Randy Zimmerman. Instead, her world turned up in February when her boyfriend died in a motorcycle accident.
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Wanting to keep Zimmerman's memory alive, Gerlach decided to have a photo shoot of girlfriends, but asked photographer Kristie Fonseca to incorporate her fiance into the shooting. And Fonseca, who has had experience in the past in the edition of loved ones in photographs, did just that.
"When I first spoke with Debbie, she told me her tragic story and asked me if I could insert her fiancé into what should have been her special day. A special day that was carelessly stolen, "Fonseca told Yahoo Lifestyle." After hearing her heartbreaking story, I knew I had to do something very special for her. "
Taking photos in a desert in Tucson, Arizona, Gerlach put on her wedding dress with a medallion with a photo of the couple and posed for emotional photos. For each shot in which the future wife was alone, Fonseca made sure that a transparent version of Zimmerman fitted perfectly into her.
"It was supposed to be his day. That was supposed to be the day they expressed their mutual love, "he told Yahoo Lifestyle." My thoughts were going at a mile per minute with ideas, poses and images that would imitate his special day with him. "
"I started the session as I normally would for a nuptial session, and then I posed for some as if I were there," Fonseca added. "She naturally posed for the photos as if he were standing right next to her." Her smile had a warmth as if he was talking to her, even though he was not there, she moved as if he were ".
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Some of the edited photos show Zimmerman with his arm around Gerlach, while in others he kisses her on the cheeks or stares at her while posing with his red bouquet of flowers.
Another shot captures Zimmerman with his back turned, walking towards the sunlight, while Gerlach extends his arm towards him. Gerlach was also photographed with love looking at her smiling fiancé.
There is even a photo where Gerlach holds the urn engraved in "Z" with the ashes of Zimmerman in it and kisses it. The black and white photo also shows her boyfriend sitting on his motorcycle in the background.
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On the Fonseca website, he recalled a story that Gerlach had shared during his photo shoot about the couple's frequent and unsuccessful attempts to synchronize their engagement photos with the sunset.
No matter how many times they tried to determine the right moment, "heaven would never participate," explained Fonseca … until the couple's wedding.
"We filmed his entire session under a big white cloud covered with sky and with his past experiences, he was not upset because there would not be a sunset," said Fonseca. "While she was finishing her story, the brightest and most colorful sunset appeared behind her as the clouds spread across the sky as if commanded."
"As I watched her embrace her memory, I could see that her love is still so strong today and I told her that her love is forever the same one that gave her a kiss in the evening," he added. "It was really a magical moment."
After revealing the emotional photos with Gerlach, Fonseca said he loved the way they turned out, but decided he would wait until the day of his wedding to share them publicly.
On November 11, Gerlach finally posted the photos on Facebook and wrote a long and heartbreaking tribute to his late fiancé, explaining that his world had changed unexpectedly in a matter of nine months.
"Today was supposed to be the best day of my life. It was supposed that today was the day I married my best friend, "the publication began. "I was supposed to wake up, put on my wedding dress and walk down the hall to the man of my dreams. Today, in front of all our family and friends, Randy and I were going to express our love for each other once again, and our vows that we would be sacred to our hearts. "
"It was supposed that today was the day I dreamed of since I was a child," he continued. "Today I was supposed to be a wife. Today I was supposed to become Mrs. Zimmerman …
"… But today I woke up just like I do every day. Today I woke up with a broken heart again. Today my dad will not accompany me down the aisle, "he wrote." Today I will not see Randy's expression at the end of that aisle when he sees me for the first time with my wedding dress, the dress that I had to hide from him because I could not wait to see. "
"Today I will not see all our friends and family. Today I will not marry the love of my life, "added Gerlach," Today I will not have a husband … "
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"… and that's because a person made a choice that has always changed my life, the option of NOT stopping at a stop sign, of NOT stopping when he saw my fiancée approaching him on his motorcycle, but rather He tried to hurry across the street, "she explained.
Since Gerlach shared the photos two weeks ago, the publication has been shared more than 163,000 times, something that the future bride could encourage others to drive more carefully, pay attention to the roads and prevent another tragic death of a motorcycle.
"Please, I beg each and every one of you to read this post, OBSERVE THE MOTORCYCLES, stop at the stop signs and drive carefully because you never know who the whole world is on that bike," he concluded. "Maybe if that person stopped, I would marry my Randy, my best friend, the love of my life."