Newlyweds Die in Helicopter Crash Hours After Saying 'I Do'


Hearts across America are breaking over the news that a newlywed couple died in a helicopter crash just hours after saying, “I do,” near Uvalde, Texas.

On Nov. 3, Will Byler stood in front of his bride, Bailee Ackerman Byler, and vowed to be by her side for the rest of his life.

Nobody could have predicted that in just a few short hours, tragedy would strike.

After their wedding ceremony, Will and Bailee climbed into a helicopter with seasoned pilot Gerald Green Lawrence, KTRK-TV reported.

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Family and friends became worried when nobody heard from the couple after the helicopter was scheduled to land in San Antonio shortly after midnight.

According to the National Transportation Safety Board, the helicopter was only in the air for 10 to 15 minutes before crashing into a rocky hill.

Air safety investigator Craig Hatch said it was still too early to determine the cause of the crash.

Condolences are pouring in from around the country, including heartfelt words from the couple’s wedding photographer, Madi Wagner.

Wagner described the Byler wedding as “their most magical, fairytale wedding.”

“These two spent their last day on this earth celebrating with their most cherished loved ones — I believe it truly was the best day of their lives,” Wagner wrote on Facebook.

Wagner said she is trusting that God’s sovereign hand is over the tragedy that is hard for finite humans to comprehend.

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“I am so saddened by this news, but now Mr. & Mrs. Byler will join our Jesus in heaven and have the most abundant marriage with no troubles, no temptation, no worries,” Wagner said.

“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.”

The couple met at Sam Houston State University, and both were in their senior year.

Lawrence was a captain in the army and fought in Vietnam, his stepdaughter Amilyn Willard reported. The flight route was very familiar to Lawrence, who had been a pilot for the Byler family for years.

Our hearts go out to all the families affected by this deeply sad tragedy.

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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