ATLANTA - A coastal Georgia couple was set to get married in Jekyll Island on Saturday, but they were forced to cancel and evacuate due to Hurricane Irma. Touched by their story, the Atlanta community has come together to throw them a last-minute wedding this weekend, thanks to Star 94.1's The Jeff & Jenn Show.
Tori Olmstead and Nicholas "Nick" Rhodes first met at the University of West Georgia in 2002. Eight years later, after dating and breaking up, they quickly realized they were meant to be together. Since then, they've been through a lot.
They were first faced with tragedy in 2011 after moving to Tuscaloosa, Alabama. Nick was in the process of earning his Ph.D. in Chemistry at the University of Alabama when an EF4 tornado ripped through the college town and destroyed their home. They lost everything they owned.
Following their devastating loss in Tuscaloosa, the couple had a long distance relationship. They were finally able to be together again in 2015 when they bought their first home together in Smyrna. Then, the following year, they moved to Saint Simons Island.
On October 3, 2016, Nick popped the question and asked Tori to marry him while out to dinner at Driftwood Bistro on Jekyll Island. However, tragedy struck again two days later when Hurricane Matthew forced them to evacuate. The couple had just closed on their home when they had to leave.
Ever since then, Tori and Nick have been planning their dream wedding and they were all set to say "I do" on Saturday, September 9, at Villa Ospo in Jekyll Island.
Then, Hurricane Irma formed...
"We found out Wednesday that we wouldn't be able to get married Saturday, so we decided to make the wedding part of the rehearsal dinner," Tori told FOX 5's Katie Muse. "Then, we found out we were going to have to evacuate even earlier."
Tori said she completely lost it. That's when some of her bridesmaids decided to step in and reached out to Star 94.1's Jeff Dauler.
Dauler told his radio co-host Jenn Hobby, and Friday morning they turned to their Jeff & Jenn Show listeners in hopes of saving the couple's wedding.
Calls instantly started pouring in with people wanting to help out and about one hour later, the entire wedding was planned. Everything from the florist, the caterer, to the venue, and even a photo booth!
"While it's very sad, your story was so inspiring and resonated with so many people," Dauler told the bride while on the air Friday. "Your entire wedding has been taken care of by The Jeff & Jenn Show family."
Tori told Dauler she was speechless and blown away, which he joked back by telling her, "don't use that phrase - too soon!"
"Everyone who we've talked to who knows you has said, 'this couple deserves it,'" Jenn Hobby told Tori. "You've got a lot of people who love you and believe in you."
The wedding will now take place Sunday evening at The Cotton Gin at Mill Creek in Hiram, and the bride and groom couldn't be more excited to become husband and wife.
"This is Southern hospitality at its finest! I've always known how compassionate this Atlanta community is," Hobby told FOX 5's Katie Muse. "Today's effort to create a dream wedding for Tori and Nick confirmed that."