HOLMES AND WASHINGTON COUNTIES - We recently invited readers to share their love stories, whether it was about romantic love, or the kind of love one has for a family member or friend, local residents did not disappoint. The stories were part of the Love Story Sweepstakes, with winners receiving gift cards and other prizes. Winning entries were submitted by: First Place - Tenille Fielding; Second Place - Kim Drummond and Third Place - Davine Shores. Here are their stories, as well as those of other participants,


The Fieldings

By Tenille Fielding

Nathan and I went to school together and graduated in 1994. Hardly saw each other for the next 19 years. He married and had a son, but the marriage ended. I married, but divorced. There we were, living just 2 miles apart, and it took Facebook to get us together. Through comments on each other's posts and private messaging, he worked up the courage to ask me out. Our first date was on March 8, 2014, and we married on June 14, 2014. His son came to live with us in November 2014. We both agree that the last 4 years of our lives have been the best. God has truly blessed us and continues to be gracious with His blessings!


A Match Made in Heaven

By Kim Drummond

Our story started a little over 14 years ago via the internet. I was not one to surf the net at all and especially not for men! However, my daughter decided I needed some adult conversation and told me about Christian Café website. Long story short, I submitted my profile, and this guy from Jasper, Alabama responded. Our profiles matched almost perfectly. We both placed our faith in God as the most important thing in our lives. After talking a few months, before we had even met, we both knew that we were in love. We met, in a very public place, and the result is an almost 14-year marriage. I've almost lost my husband twice. Once to our stupidity and selfishness, but God who began a good work in us, was determined to finish that work. We sought godly council and after a 6-month separation reconciled our marriage. Then in August of 2016, he became very ill, very quickly. He was diagnosed with acute pancreatitis, placed in a medically induced coma, put on a ventilator and fought for his life for four long weeks. I was told repeatedly, that he would not make it. BUT GOD!! I stayed by his side day in and day out, praying, believing and watching miracle after miracle, knowing God was going before us each step of the way. I surrendered him back to God and told Him whatever He decided to do, I would give Him praise! He gave Dan back to me and his family. He is the light of my life, my song in the night, and we both know that ours is a love made in heaven. Through it all, with God as our center, we can overcome all obstacles together! This picture is the day I brought him home from HealthSouth. Together, we have four children and six - soon to be seven - grand-children. So, I guess you truly can say, ours is "A Match Made in heaven!"


The BEST Love Story

By Davine Shores

When our granddaughter was a few months old, her Dad enlisted in the Army. When he completed his basic training, we assumed he would be sent somewhere close by. Not so with the Service. His first assignment was in Germany, far away from home. Our daughter and granddaughter lived with us for about a year while our son-in-law found suitable quarters for them to live. Needless to say, our granddaughter began to think her granddad was her father. There was a special bond that grew between them. When her Dad found a place to live in Germany, he sent for our daughter and granddaughter. They had never been away from home before and the separation was almost unbearable. With a lot of phone calls (expensive) and prayers we all survived this time. As the story continues, our granddaughter grew into a successful, mature adult and married the love of her life. As a result of this union, we have been blessed with four beautiful great-grandsons who hold our hearts in their hands. Our love story grows each day as we see them grow and have them in our lives to complete the happiness we have had with their mother. I pray the Lord will give us long life to see these boys continue our legacy.


Chris & Amy

By Amy Kowitz

After 24 years of marriage we love each other more each & everyday! Cannot imagine our lives without each other!


Two Kids in Love

By Amy Paul

17 years [ago] at the age of 19 and 20, we just clicked. I was a teen mom of two boys. He was a guy who wanted to be loved. About a month before we met, we had both prayed the same prayer: "God, please send me a person that will love me as much as I love them." I had also asked that he would love my boys as much as he loved me. I was trying to raise two boys alone, and it was so hard. That year, I didn't have a dime for Christmas presents or even a tree. The night we met, that was it. I called my mom the next morning and told her I met the man I was going to marry. Apparently he felt the same way also. After talking on the phone for a week, he came back into town the following week to visit. He got scared and called me and said this is crazy and I don't want to see you anymore. I was devastated. The next morning at 7 a.m. somebody was knocking on my little apartment door. I opened it and there he stood with a Christmas tree, Christmas decorations, and presents for my kids. He said, "I don't know what this is, but I need you in my life." He moved in the next week, and we were engaged three weeks later, married three months after we met. The odds have always been against us, but we went into our marriage not believing in divorce and always relying on each other. We put God first, then family, then everything else. We now have raised the two boys, who are both in the Navy. We still have a daughter at home but we are looking forward to our life without kids since we haven't ever had that. We fall in love literally over and over everyday. We were just 2 young kids that didn't now anything about life that we strongly believe God put together. We have always struggled and the odds were mostly not in our favor but at the end of the day we have each other!


The Bridges

By Candice Bridges

Our story started back in 1994. I was 24 years old and Wayne was 25. I had found myself divorced from my high school sweetheart just six short months before and was devastated and insecure. A friend of mine from church told me of a guy she knew that lived in Port St. Joe that she had went to church with and offered to introduce us. We met on a Sunday night in April after church at Wendy's with some friends and we were smitten! We started seeing each other and talking with each other almost daily, and within 6 weeks, on June 10, 1994, we were married! He was the solid rock I needed after the shaky sand I had been through. We have been together every since and this year will be 24 years! I used to call him "my oak tree", for his strength and moral fortitude, and he still is. Candice and Wayne Bridges


Amazing Love

By Jamie Hall

Growing up, we both dreamed of a family with kids and Sunday dinners. It was January of 2010, and this woman had swept me completely off my feet. I remember it being cold and how warm she made me feel while we were walking Lake Defuniak. I could tell she was nervous. Shortly in to our duck watching, she sat me down at a table and hit her knee. I was overwhelmed with every feeling I'd never known. Saying yes meant that we would be committing ourselves to each other, that we would live our lives as one and we were doing it voluntarily. Five years and three days later, there it was everywhere. Posted on social media, newspaper headlines, videos of men and women lined at the clerk's office to get a piece of paper saying they could legally wed. We waited, waited to see if this would last because we didn't want to get our hopes up again (and I had plans for a wedding that could not be orchestrated in a clerk's office). I always pick at her: "I bet you never planned on a Supreme Court ruling when you proposed" (I'm a catch and the perfect wife, right?). We spent the rest of the year making five years worth of wedding plans come true. Everything needed to be perfect, after all we both knew this was it, we would never have another wedding like this. It was a hot, humid and sunny day in November our family gathered at the same lake our love story began. It was a fairy tail, family and friends gathered eager to show their support of our love. It was amazing. I remember it rained, and I always heard if it rained on your wedding day it was a symbol of good luck. It's been an amazing seven-year adventure. We have so much to be thankful for and I have an amazing wife to share my life with. A love like this only happens once in a lifetime. As for Sunday dinner, we have it, after church every other Sunday, and our highchair fits perfectly nestled amongst cousins at Nanny's dinner table.