Change of plans

Couple postpones wedding in Italy amid COVID-19 pandemic


May 15, 2020 was supposed to be the highlight of an unforgettable series of events for Jamie Wyatt and Tommy Sprowl. Unfortunately, COVID-19 had other plans, and the young couple was forced to make the heartbreaking decision to postpone their dream destination wedding.

“Jamie and I had a hard time convincing ourselves that it was best to postpone our wedding,” Sprowl said. “We didn’t know the severity of the situation at first, but after several weeks had gone by and the situation didn’t get much better, we knew what we had to do. We were emotionally torn about the decision, but we also knew that God had a different plan for us.”

Wyatt and Sprowl, who grew up together in Rochelle and have known each other for years, are one of many couples around the country who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the two have remained positive throughout the crisis, and their recent appearance on NBC’s TODAY allowed them to help lift the spirits of others across the United States.

“Our aunt signed us up to be in the plaza audience on the TODAY show with several other couples who were supposed to celebrate their big moments Friday,” Wyatt said. “We’ve been showered with cards throughout the week and one of my sisters cooked us a surprise meal Friday evening. Our flower girl also showed up to our house and delivered flowers to us. We want to remind everybody that love conquers all and everything will be alright in the end.”

Wyatt and Sprowl had been looking forward to their destination wedding since last March, when they decided to be married in Italy, where Wyatt said their relationship developed while she was studying abroad and Sprowl was at basic training. The weeklong festivities would have included day trips to the cities of Florence and San Gimignano and meals at Borgo Petrognano.

“The TODAY show loved our story and selected us to take part in their show,” Sprowl said. “Everybody is going through tough times, but we all need to stay strong and remember that it could always be worse. There are some families that are unable to attend funerals or the birth of their children because of the pandemic. Our wedding was postponed, but I’m happy that we had the ability to reschedule the wedding and have the opportunity to share our special day.”

Sadly, Italy has been one of the most heavily impacted countries by the COVID-19 pandemic in the world, with over 223,000 cases and nearly 32,000 deaths to date. Wyatt and Sprowl held out hope that COVID-19 would subside when their wedding approached, but with cases and deaths still accumulating, the couple chose to postpone their wedding until the fall of 2021.

“When we started hearing in January and February that Italy was one of the hardest hit countries by COVID-19, we thought there was no way it would impact our May wedding,” Wyatt said. “We thought Friday might be hard knowing it would have been our wedding day, but our friends and family planned several surprises for us to make us feel special and loved.”

Fortunately, Wyatt and Sprowl recently received their marriage license and certificate, and the couple will still be hosting a ceremony in Italy. The two are looking forward to their special ceremony, and they said waiting will only make the eventual wedding even more exciting.

“Jamie and I are still doing our wedding in Italy after I return home from deployment,” Sprowl said. “We’re extremely excited and this whole situation will make it that much more special. We were hit with a curveball, but God has other plans for our future and we are OK with that.”