Ohio bridal shop gives vets free wedding dresses to honor service

GIRARD, OH (WKBN) – A bridal shop in Girard gave back to veterans and their families in a special way on Thursday. Stephanie Leigh Bridal on N. State Street gave military brides-to-be and their families free gowns.

Katie Schumacher is getting married in a little over a year but her job as a lieutenant in the Coast Guard affords her very little time to plan.

“Gotta pick a location, gotta pick a venue, a DJ, a photographer,” she said.

The dress is just one of her worries — and she doesn’t know which one to say “yes” to.

“I think this is my fourth or fifth dress and I’ve loved them all,” Katie said.

She is stationed in Cleveland and her wedding will be in Indiana. Katie moves around constantly.

“I went down to the Keys this summer and right now I’m working on some projects in Texas with Hurricane Harvey,” she said.

Wanting to give back to military personnel and first responders, Stephanie Leigh Bridal teamed up with Brides Across America four years ago to give military brides the ultimate gift.

Currently, Stephanie Leigh is the only bridal shop in Ohio working with the organization.

Katie said the bridal shop is taking a huge weight off her shoulders.

“To be able to give someone a free gown, that helps out immensely in the wedding process,” Stephanie Farr said. “Something that can just take a load off…it’s one less stress for them.”

Katie loves the grind of working in the Coast Guard but nothing beats finding that special dress.

She’s one step closer to a lifelong dream.

“Wear the white dress, walk down the aisle, and marry the man that I love,” Katie said.

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