Bride Calls Off Engagement, Then Donates Wedding Venue To Deserving Couple

"... you can end up changing the outcome of someone’s entire life when you stop caring about the outcome of your own."

Although Kolbie Sanders called off her engagement just weeks before her wedding, the 24-year-old was determined to make her big day special — for someone else.

"With my engagement ending, I've come to find tremendous peace in knowing that I did the right thing for the both of us," Sanders wrote in an announcement of Facebook. "With that being said, now I want to do the right thing by others and let some good come out of this decision."

"This is a long shot, but since my wedding venue has been paid for in full already, I have decided to donate my venue valued at $3,500 to a couple to use for their wedding day!" she explained. "The catch: I have 24 hours to find the couple and they would need to be ready to get married on the date that my venue is booked for which is this Saturday, October 20th!"

With the venue on board, Sanders advised potential couples to privately message her via Facebook and provide the backstory of their relationship, engagement, and overall love story, as well as why this donation would help them. 

"Choosing someone will be hard, so the more I know about your relationship, the better! Please share this post! This is for couples who can't afford a fancy venue or for couples who are spending too much money on their kids to be able to afford a nice wedding. This is for couples who love each other and will continue to choose each other for the rest of their lives."


As Sanders' offer gained traction, local businesses stepped up to offer their services for free in order to make these spur-of-the-moment festivities as memorable as possible. From food and photography, to bouquets and beauty, the details were practically all accounted for ahead of time. All that was left was choosing the happy couple. According to PEOPLE, Sanders ultimately put the names of those who contacted her in a hat and picked 22-year-old Halie Hipsher at random.

"My sister is actually the one that tagged me and one of our friends," Hipsher told A Plus. "Then I tagged my mom and she was the one that said go ahead and enter y'all!" 

"I wasn't quite sure if we were going to be able to pull it off, but with the help of everyone that donated and my amazing family, we managed to do so," she added.

Yet, while Hipsher and her now-husband Matthew Jones had planned to get married next year, the couple was especially grateful for the opportunity to expedite their nuptials because of Hipsher's grandfather, Edwin Truett Hipsher.

According to Hipsher's submission, her 81-year-old grandfather has stage 4 pancreatic cancer and, had their wedding not been moved up, he likely would not have gotten to see his granddaughter walk down the aisle.

"As he is nearing the closing of his chapter this donation will put us a year ahead of schedule and he will be able to attend," Hipsher wrote.

"This is more than a love story between two love birds, but also a love story between a girl and her pawpaw," she added.

"If she hadn't won the wedding, she would have had to wait another year, and the chances of Edwin being alive would be slim. I'm so grateful she won," Sanders told SWNS.

"The best part of this story, her grandfather has stage 4 pancreatic cancer whom she is very close too, and prior to this experience she was unsure if he would be able to witness her walking down the aisle for what would have been her future wedding," Samantha Morrison of Morrison Light Photography wrote alongside Hipsher and Jones's photos on Facebook. Morrison volunteered to photograph the couple's special day for free as a favor to Sanders. 

"Well both of their dreams came true and the happy tears were flowing yesterday. The bond she shares with her grandfather radiates infinitely. Everything about yesterday was perfect and beautiful in every way!"

Hipsher and Jones were so thankful for Sanders' generosity, they invited the woman who started it all to share their big day and witness firsthand all the joy they experienced because of her generous donation.

"These [three] people are the reason why good things come from making good decisions in good faith," Sanders wrote on Facebook. "This is why everyone should show acts of kindness to their neighbors, friends, family members, and especially complete strangers because you can end up changing the outcome of someone's entire life when you stop caring about the outcome of your own," Sanders wrote on Facebook after the wedding. "So blessed to know the Hipsher/Jones family and beyond grateful to have been able to witness the best day of their lives. Your love and strength in life is beyond inspiring and I can't wait continue to see your love grow." 

"My grandfather is the person who glues our family together and words cannot express how happy I was that he got to see me get married," Hipsher said.

"Kolbie is a gift from God and the sweetest person I have ever met," she added. "She is apart of our extended family now and she has brought so much joy to a family in need of it. This wedding lifted up my grandfather and brought a spark back in him." 

Cover image via Kolbie Sanders / Facebook


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