I am a wedding and portrait photographer who keeps things light, fun, and full of energy. I’m based out of Springfield, Illinois however I love traveling all over the midwest and beyond.
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Well…I was completely wrong! What I thought about Jen and Marshall’s relationship was totally incorrect! Oh the love each of them feel for one another is so true and purely amazing to watch. But, the relationship I thought happened leading up to their Piper Glen Golf Course Wedding in Springfield, Illinois last weekend was simply untrue! That’s what you get for assuming things right?! Jen had posted a photo not long after they booked me as their photographer of her and Marshall from high school and spoke of the two of them starting to date so many years before. In my mind they had been together all these years and were high school sweethearts for close to 10 years or more. Yet, when I asked Jen’s mom, Judy, to clarify their back story a bit for me while I was photographing all of Jen’s dress details on wedding day, I was blown away at how wrong I was.
Jen and Marshall most definitely started dating in high school, and I remember that since I went to high school with both of them at Glenwood in Chatham, Illinois. Jen was, and continues to be, one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met. We met one another in grade school when we were on the same YBA Basketball team. She was a year younger than me in school, but somehow we would find each other in the same circle of friends and sports growing up. She’s laid back and always making sure everyone else is taken care of. Which I’m sure makes her an incredible nurse. Marshall constantly has a smile on his face. Back then and of course on the biggest day of his life. Marshall and I were in the same class and involved in sports all throughout high school. He made me laugh a lot with his goofiness and passion for fun! So when you put the two of them together…get ready for a great time!
I learned more however, about their relationship and the turns it took during their ceremony when the officiant, Dan Rourke, who was Marshall’s football coach and the Glenwood Athletic Director, as well as great friend to the couple, explained the course their love took. When Marshall graduated from high school, he and Jen split up after they had dated for around two years. He went onto college and Jen finished and graduated one year later. A couple of years go by and he reaches out to Jen to see if they could catch up. The story goes that Jen eloquently gave him a choice phrase you tell someone when you want nothing to do with them. I’ll let you fill in the blank here. YEARS go by. We are talking like around 9 YEARS!! Both Jen and Marshall living their own lives without seeing or talking to one another. Jen focused on her nursing career and never, over those years, seriously dated anyone else since her high school love. Marshall moved back from Louisiana to get into the family business and decided to try again to reach out to Jen. This time she accepted his invitation and they end up talking for hours, catching up as if those years between them were only a few quick hours. Then, as everyone I talked to put it, “He never left!” Marshall proposed a little over a year later and the rest is history! Marshall lost her once and didn’t want to lose her again and Jen said she always knew it was Marshall. She honestly just needed some time to prove it to herself. Oh how much I love this all!
One of my favorite parts of spending so much time with couples on their wedding day and along the journey to their big day is learning a deeper sense of their love story. Jen and Marshall’s is a unique one showing that love is worth the wait. The amount of laughs, emotion, and elation that filled their day was fantastic to witness and be a part of! Not only between the two of them, but also with all their family and friends, who played a huge role in the day. I am grateful to both Jen and Marshall for thinking of me to photograph their big day after all these years. But, I guess that is their style! Reconnecting with them has been an awesome experience and I wish them blessings beyond anything they could ever dream of! I love those Pierces!
Thank You to all the wonderful vendors who helped make the Pierce’s wedding gorgeous!
Ceremony/Reception Venue: Piper Glen Golf Club
Florist: Friday’z Flowers & Gifts
Cake: Brittany Bisch
Band: Fun DMC