The standard gifts for most marrying couples are things like small appliances and honeymoon money, but Logan Ryan of the Tennessee Titans and his wife Ashley Bragg requested something more selfless.
According to The Dodo, the lovebirds have always been animal activists and actually started a social media campaign to help find homes for shelter dogs. So when it came time to tie the knot, they asked their family and friends to donate to their local shelters. During the destination wedding, Ryan and Bragg were taking photos in the streets of St. Lucia when they met a stray.
Taking it as a sign, the newlyweds did some research on organizations on the island and found an animal rescue called HelpAWS. They reached out to the founder (Charlene Penney) to learn more about the work that HelpAWS does, and decided that it was the right place for their wedding guests to support.
"Most people wanted to donate to an organization that would be more meaningful to us," Bragg said. "So once we connected with Charlene, we gave them HelpAWS."
Because of the assist, the organization has been able to expand its efforts and help many more animals in need. The dog that found its way into Ryan-Bragg wedding photos (now named Logan after the Titans cornerback) was among those helped, and he will soon be up for adoption.
"There's no better feeling in the world than saving an animal off the street who you know without a shadow of a doubt would have died had you not intervened," Charlene Penney said. "The fact that we connected with HelpAWS and helped this one particular dog made the entire experience even more unforgettable," Bragg said.
She has plans to return to the island to work with the organization in the near future.