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Photo by: Summers Focus Photography

Cody Hebert considers himself a pretty traditional guy.

He and his high school sweetheart, Skye, took their relationship long-distance when they attended nursing schools in different states. The couple reunited when they both got jobs in Tampa—Cody at Moffitt Cancer Center and Skye at St. Joseph’s Hospital—and Cody got down on one knee during a trip to Greece in the summer of 2019.

They were planning the wedding of their dreams with 200 guests for April 19. But when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, their traditions had to take a turn. There was no way to safely bring so many people together, and Skye’s father, a military contractor stationed in Germany, would no longer be able to travel back to the states.

“It was hard for me at first because I am so traditional and I had always pictured our wedding with both of our families,” said Cody.

It was Skye’s dad who came up with a solution.

“Her dad said, ‘Just get married. Go ahead and do it,’” said Cody. “He said he could use FaceTime to walk Skye down the aisle.”

Cody and Skye decided to break with tradition and get married just a few days later, on March 21. The 21st has a special meaning to the couple—it was the day Cody asked Skye to be his girlfriend all those years ago.

Skye already had her dress and Cody scavenged for a last-minute suit. Four close friends joined them at their pastor’s waterfront property for the ceremony. Skye walked down the aisle towards her future husband, tears in her eyes and her phone in her hand as her dad walked with her and gave her away.

“It meant so much to Skye that her dad could be there, whether it was on FaceTime or in person,” said Cody. “It was 3 a.m. in Germany with the time difference and he waited up all night for it. It was just so special he was there.”

Even though the pair didn’t have the wedding they originally planned for, they are still very happy how things turned out and now can’t imagine being married any other way.

“This whole virus situation, who would have ever thought this would happen,” said Cody. “But I think it was God’s way of saying I don’t have this all planned out. We are so happy with how it all turned out. I wouldn’t change it for the world.”

The couple’s Hawaiian honeymoon is now on hold, and both have returned to their hospital floors in the meantime. And when the time is right, they will have their big wedding. And Skye’s dad will be there, this time in person.

“We will have a big party and this time there will be no pre-wedding nerves,” said Cody. “That’s the best part.”