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Wharf Rat wedding at the Wharf Rat Rally


Published on September 2, 2017

The Wharf Rat Wedding! John Leight and Keri Ann Snow kiss as they’re pronounced husband and wife by Diane Axent September 2 at the rally.

©Sara Ericsson

DIGBY, NS – Two veterans exchanged vows and tears as they were wed at the Wharf Rat September 2 in front of fellow veterans, friends, family and onlookers.

A crowd of over 100 people gathered around 2 p.m. September 2 as Keri Ann Snow and John Leight stood before Diane Axent to be wed at the Wharf Rat Rally.

The pair first met while on tour in Afghanistan, bonding immediately over their shared experiences as veterans and struggles with PTSD.

“This couple has served on many battle fronts, making a world of difference, and in all of that found each other,” said Axent.

 

Pushing through PTSD together

Snow and Leight together have over forty years of military service under their belts.

Published on 02 September 2017

Groom John Leight sheds a few tears as he waits for soon-to-be wife Keri Ann Snow to arrive.

Photos by Sara Ericsson

Published on 02 September 2017

Keri Ann hugs Diane Axent, who officiated the wedding, before the ceremony kicked off.

Photos by Sara Ericsson

Published on 02 September 2017

Axent reads from the wedding script as bride and groom stand with their service dogs, who share a sort of embrace. Both are diagnosed with PTSD, which played a vital part in how they met and fell in love.

Photos by Sara Ericsson

Published on 02 September 2017

Snow’s daughter Aeris said her mother and step-father met when Keri Ann walked up to Leight as he was having a nervous episode, placing her hand on his shoulder.

Photos by Sara Ericsson

Published on 02 September 2017

Both bride and groom are veterans and have served in several international conflicts. “Many things happened, but we have each other now,” said Snow.

Photos by Sara Ericsson

Published on 02 September 2017

“I promise to treat you as good as my leather and ride you as hard as my Harley,” said both bride and groom during their vows. “We wanted to make sure we included a bit of ourselves in it,” said Snow.

Photos by Sara Ericsson

Published on 02 September 2017

Leight and Snow are pronounced man and wife, and look pretty happy about that.

Photos by Sara Ericsson

Published on 02 September 2017

Snow’s daughter Aeris smiles as her mother and step-father share their first kiss as a married couple.

Photos by Sara Ericsson

Published on 02 September 2017

The getaway bike, complete with the wedding party’s names and a beer-can train.

Photos by Sara Ericsson

Snow’s daughter, Aeris, recounted when her step-father knew Keri Ann was the one.

Snow walked up to Leight as he was having a panic attack, placing her hand on his shoulder.

She was the only person to do that.

“It was right when her hand touched his shoulder that he knew he loved her,” said Aeris.

“It’s the most romantic thing you could ever think of.”

During the ceremony, the couple shook slightly as nerves took hold.

“I know sometimes we’re all full of nerves, so I want to check in and see how you’re both doing,” said Axent.

“We’re better, now,” said Snow, smiling.

 

Unique vows for a unique love story

Snow said Leight first came up with the idea four months ago.

The couple make their escape on their getaway Harley.

©Sara Ericsson

“Wharf Rat has always been a special place for us, and John joked we should make it happen at the rally,” said Snow.

“Two months later, he said, ‘okay we’re really doing it,’ and that was that!”

The couple stared deep into each other’s eyes, service dogs by their sides, as Axent prepared their wedding rings.

Leight laughed and choked back tears as he said his vows, written by he and Snow, to his soon-to-be wife.

“I will treat you as good as my leather and ride you as hard as my Harley,” they each said to the other.

“We wanted to make sure we had a bit of ourselves in the wedding,” said Snow.