Bride-to-be: Crystal L. Williams, 39, Retired veteran currently completing an M.Ed in Counseling

Groom-to-be: Steve Jones, 47, US Navy Chief Warrant Officer

A Journey to Love

Crystal and Steve started out as friends, with his advice serving as a foundation for their friendship. Her candidness and attentiveness grabbing him from the beginning. Remembering their first meeting, Crystal talks about her initial reaction to Steve. “We both arrived to a gathering 5 years ago. I had no idea who he was or what he did for a living. But his sense of humor and self-confidence was so noticeable. He really stood out to me.”

Hours into the night, Crystal and Steve would talk, sharing their secrets, each captivated by the presence of the other. It was then that Steve confessed that “she was unlike anyone [he] had ever met.”

Steve remembers Crystal being reserved yet observant, with a knockout smile. Crystal was attracted to his swagger, and the confidence that matched his gift of gab. From that moment, the stepping stones were there, and Crystal and Steve would walk them together, deciding that they would remain friends and rely on each other personally and professionally. 

“He was simply the perfect gentleman,” Crystal swoons. “And still is.”

A Veteran Affair

Both in the military, Crystal and Steve kept their romance professional, until one day Steve volunteered to do a tour in Iraq. While there, he confided in Crystal that he was having a tough time. ”At that point I became the mentor, and he the mentee.” Crystal shares, ”My strong religious upbringing was what I relied on as I encouraged him to stay the course.”

As if her words didn’t fill his spirit enough, her thoughtfulness translated into action. For his birthday, she gave him a GPS mavigation unit and phone book!  

“That was the best gift [I] ever received”, said Steve.

Steve and Crystal’s love blossomed from premature to full-fledged after that, and while overseas Steve asked her to marry him via Skype. Just as they had done when they first met, they talked into the night — this time about the future they would be sharing together. 

Then they shared their big news with the world! Watch the behind the scenes video from their shoot below then check out our favorite photos from their shoot in the gallery above.


Crystal & Steve’s “Love Story” from Keith Cephus on Vimeo.

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