It’s unimaginable that a day that began with so much promise could end up in sheer heartbreak for two college sweethearts who had planned on spending the rest of their lives together as husband and wife.
No wonder this story has been touching so many people out there.
Texas newlyweds Will Byler and Bailee Ackerman Byler were killed on Saturday in a helicopter crash on what was expected to be the happiest day of their lives.
Just 90 minutes or so after exchanging vows of love and eternal devotion before God and their loved ones, these two had their lives brought up short when the chopper transporting them from their wedding reception went down near Uvalde, in Southwest Texas.
The crash happened on the family’s ranch, according to many media outlets.
Gerald Green Lawrence, the helicopter’s pilot, also died in the crash that occurred at 1:47 a.m., said the New York Post.
What should have been long-lasting celebratory sentiments of joy for the brand new bride and groom are now, instead, expressions of grief and heartache.
“It is with deepest sadness that we announce the tragic passing of two Bearkats, Will Byler (agriculture engineering senior) and Bailee Ackerman Byler (agricultural communication senior) in a helicopter accident [after] departing their wedding,” read a Facebook post from The Houstonian, the student newspaper at Sam Houston State University.
“We ask that you keep the Byler and Ackerman families in your thoughts and prayers,” the post also said.
On Sunday, just hours after the fatal crash, wedding photographer Madi Wagner — someone who is accustomed to capturing life’s joys with her camera — expressed herself on social media with pain-filled words.
Her post on Facebook reads: “Today, my heart hurts. I received a phone call this morning that I wouldn’t wish upon anyone.”
“I sat down with Will and Bailee a couple weeks ago over dinner and all they could do was smile and giggle at one another and talk about their upcoming wedding,” she also said.
A Texas bride and groom were killed after a helicopter that whisked them away from their wedding reception crashed, killing everyone onboard. https://t.co/rihgJAAl62
— Globalnews.ca (@globalnews) November 5, 2018
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Texas newlyweds die in helicopter crash while leaving their wedding https://t.co/arNfFWNpsM
— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) November 5, 2018
“I am so saddened by this news, but now Mr. and Mrs. Byler will join our Jesus in heaven and have the most abundant marriage with no troubles, no temptation, no worries.”
“I know for certain God needed these two sweet souls more than we did here on earth. I know for certain they have made him proud, for the work they have done here on Earth as well.”
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“To see all of the people that loved these two so greatly is a blessing.”
The National Transportation Safety Board, meanwhile, is investigating the accident involving a Bell 206B aircraft, according to ABC News.
Elizabeth Economou is a former CNBC staff writer and adjunct professor. Follow her on Twitter.