It took a year for Jasmine and Brandon Fast to plan their dream wedding: a summer, blue-skied celebration in front of family and friends on a farm in Estacada.
It took a Southwest Airlines crew only hours to add their own spin on Jasmine and Brandon’s wedding tale, 10 days after the high school sweethearts tied the knot.
On Wednesday, with about 30 minutes left until they touched down at PDX, a flight attendant came over the plane’s speakers and called the Fasts to the front. Jasmine was working a Sudoku puzzle; Brandon was asleep, awoken by the “ding, ding” of the intercom.
Confused, the newlyweds joined the attendant at the front of the plane. Passengers closed their windows and turned on their personal headlights as the crew dimmed the plane’s lights, creating an ambiance required for a once-in-a-lifetime moment like this.
When they got to the front, flight attendants handed Brandon and Jasmine red crowns made up of pretzel bags, a free snack for passengers. They also wrapped a toilet-paper sash around Jasmine which read “just married.” And then, in front of complete strangers, on a return flight from their Orlando honeymoon, Jasmine and Brandon had their second “wedding ceremony” in as many weeks. A love song played over the speakers as they processed down the lighted aisle.
“It was absolutely insane and unexpected,” Brandon said over Facetime, days after their wedding in the sky happened. “To me, it’s so easy for people to get caught up in a life of negativity, and I think what happens is our brains start hiding in protection mode. If people can transform their mindset from being avoidant to inclusive, I think amazing things can happen — and they should happen like this every day.”
The young couple, who met each other at Gresham High School and had their first date at their senior prom, have shown a flare for the big moment. When Brandon proposed to Jasmine, a well-known Disney fanatic, he took her to Disneyland and hired a videographer. they got dressed in ballroom costumes from “Beauty and the Beast” as they recreated the scene. He told her it was part of a Disney commercial, but when the movie’s main song finished, he dropped to a knee and asked for her hand.
That was planned. A reenacted wedding ceremony on their flight’s descent was unexpected.
The tell came from the Fasts’ Disney honeymoon shirts. Immediately, a flight attendant asked if they had just married. When the two confirmed it the flight attendants sent back two bottles of champagne.
“We were like, ‘That’s so nice,'” Jasmine said. “We were totally OK with that being it.”
But the crew had more in store. Hours later, on their flight from Austin to Portland, the crew unveiled their spur of the moment wedding.
Along with the ceremony, the crew also gave the Fasts a bag filled with napkins. On each one, passengers from flight #2303 wrote marriage advice. One couple, who Brandon estimated had been together for about 50 years, used their napkin to list 26 items of marriage advice. The notes were real, Jasmine said, and she and Brandon took them to heart. They plan to frame all the napkins.
The flight back to Portland was supposed to be the end of the Newberg couple’s honeymoon. Instead, thanks to complete strangers, it was another boost toward a lifetime of commitment.
“Marriage is a lot more than a honeymoon and a wedding,” Jasmine said. “We’re building a life together. (We’re) holding onto how we feel now and bringing that throughout the years we spend together.”
For Brandon, the whole experience reminded him how much love and support — from friends, family and even strangers — he and Jasmine have.
“The wedding was perfect in all aspects: the dancing, the ceremony, the food was all great, but nothing beats having everyone getting on stage and dancing with us; nothing beats having everyone crying and sobbing their eyes out for us,” Brandon said. “And then going on the plane and having everyone write love napkins for us — it’s astounding to me that people are willing to do that…It’s amazing.”