Everyone likes to tell the story of how they met their significant other. Well, almost everyone.

If you asked Andrew and Violet how they met, they might have told you that they were introduced to each other by a mutual friend at a bar, or maybe that they ran into each other while getting coffee at Starbucks. But like many people in this day and age, Andrew and Violet actually met in November of 2016 on a dating app called Bumble.

Both were new to Jacksonville—Violet was working on her nursing degree at University of Florida, while Andrew, a member of the U.S. Navy, was stationed aboard the USS Iwo Jima at Naval Station Mayport. Despite their busy schedules, after meeting on Bumble, they made a date to get sushi at St. Johns Town Center.

After a few dates, Andrew had to go out to sea with the Navy, but he and Violet remained in touch.

One day, while Andrew was gone, Violet asked him if he would like to take a trip with her somewhere. When he asked where, she responded, “Anywhere, I don’t know.” Luckily for Violet, Andrew did all the planning, and they chose New Orleans for their spontaneous road trip. They spent a week exploring the city and getting to know each other better.

The following February, Violet planned a cruise to the Bahamas for Andrew’s birthday, and they continued to spend time together when they weren’t busy with work or school.

At the end of March, Violet learned that she was pregnant. She told Andrew, and they were both full of nervous excitement. In August, they packed up Violet’s apartment in St Johns Town Center and moved together into the house they now call home.

Their son, Tobias Julio Hill, was born on December 4, 2017 at Wolfson Children’s Hospital in downtown Jacksonville—one of the happiest days of both their lives.

On February 7, 2018, Andrew had to say goodbye to Violet and baby Tobias when he left for a six-month deployment to the Middle East. Throughout his deployment, they emailed each other every day, and Violet sent weekly care packages full of treats and photos of their newborn son.

Finally, on August 9, Andrew was scheduled to return home, and Violet was waiting for him. Little did she know, he’d been planning something special for his return to Jacksonville. With the help of friends and family—and Diamonds Direct—Andrew picked out a beautiful ring for Violet. Once the ship was moored, he met Violet and, on bended knee, asked her to spend the rest of her life with him—and she said yes!

I first learned about this lovely couple when Andrew’s surprise proposal was aired on Action News Jax, and Diamonds Direct shared their wonderful story.

Since I’ve been fortunate enough to work with Diamonds Direct over the past year, I contacted them immediately, asking for help getting in touch with Andrew and Violet. I wanted to offer the couple a special gift—and I wanted to have the opportunity to share that gift with them myself.

To my surprise, Andrew and Violet got in touch with me, and I got to surprise them with a free wedding collection! They were so glad they didn’t have to worry about finding a wedding photographer, and I was so happy to help! But when they told me their wedding date, I panicked. I was already booked!

Fortunately, Violet got back to me with an alternative date, and I was free that day! I couldn’t believe they decided to change their wedding date just for me, but I was so grateful and glad I could still be a part of their special day.

We were able to have their engagement session before Andrew left again for military duty. I can’t thank Andrew enough for his service, and I can’t thank this couple enough for accepting my gift and letting me capture their love.