Paraplegic veteran surprises bride by standing for their first dance

This may be one of the most touching wedding gifts of all time.

Sergeant Joe "Joey" Johnson is a military veteran who fought in Afghanistan for 10 months. When he came home to Indiana, he suffered from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. Desperately needing a distraction, he began riding his motorcycle without wearing a helmet, pushing the bike past safe speeds and enjoying the rush of danger. Four months after his homecoming, Joey lost control of the bike while rounding a curve too fast and suffered a spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed from the chest down.

Where some significant others might have turned away in despair, Joey's girlfriend Michelle "never left my side," he told Fox59 News of Indianapolis. The two had met at a concert shortly after he returned home from Afghanistan. The two were surprised to discover that they shared the same last name and the same birthday! Michelle's devotion soon lead Joey to pop the question, and she said yes. Michelle also happens to be a professional wedding planner, so of course she handled every detail of their wedding — except one.

Joey pulled off a surprise for his bride that took her breath away. After their wedding in June of this year, Michelle walked into their reception hall to find her new husband waiting for their first dance. He was standing.

For months, Joey had been secretly working with friends from the military (who also became his groomsmen at the wedding) to build a special harness suspended from the ceiling that allowed Michelle to dance with her husband on their wedding day.


Come on, how beautiful is that? LinneaLiz Photography was on hand to capture pictures of the wedding, and has posted a slew of photos from the event online, including more looks at that dance.

Incidentally... If you didn't at least tear up a little at that video, you're a robot and we judge you.

Image: LinneaLiz Photography 

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