Love is an ocean: Couple gets married 30 miles out to sea on lighthouse platform

Published: Sep. 15, 2021 at 2:28 PM EDT
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(WWAY) - A North Carolina couple had a one-of-a-kind wedding, exchanging vows at Frying Pan Tower, an old lighthouse more than 30 miles off the East Coast.

“It was everything I’ve ever wanted, ever dreamed of. It was perfect,” said bride Audrey Black.

About 85 feet above the ocean, she and Ben Black tied the knot Saturday in the first wedding ever at the tower.

“It wasn’t necessarily a race to get out there to be the first by any stretch, it just so happened it worked out that way,” Ben Black said. “To be the first to get married out there is pretty cool.”

The tower holds a special place in the husband’s heart: One year to the day of the wedding, he said he sat on the helipad and prayed that his soulmate be placed in his life.

Four days later, he got a notification on his phone alerting him it was his future wife’s birthday.

He hadn’t spoken to her in years at the time, but he wished her happy birthday. The rest is history.

When she suggested the place to hold the wedding, he was instantly sold on the idea.

At 7:20 p.m. Saturday, she walked out onto the helipad for the most special day.

“My heart skipped a few beats,” Ben Black said. “She was absolutely the most beautifully stunning woman I’d laid my eyes on.”

Photographer Jeff Wenzel with Above Topsail portrait studio was charged with capturing the magic.

“To be able to capture it, but more importantly for those images to be seen by them, by their children by their relatives, by their friends it’s just so important to me - to not only capture the story but for them to be able to display it and see it,” Wenzel said.

The Frying Pan Tower is now used for environmental research and serves as a shelter to a natural ecosystem.

“This is exactly what we wanted, this is the perfect way to start things off and for us to start our future together,” Ben Black said. “This isn’t the last time we’ll be back on the tower for sure.”

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