A California police officer who was prevented from traveling to his daughter’s wedding got some help from his brothers and sisters in blue.
Amanda Rabe found out her father wouldn’t be able to walk her down the aisle on her wedding day. Rabe said her dad still suffers from a spinal cord and brain injury after he was shot in the line of duty several years ago. To this day he still suffers from severe migraines, which cause him to pass out.
“It’s normal for him. We’re very used to it, TSA wasn’t,” Rabe said.
Sadly, the agency wouldn’t allow him to fly from his home in Idaho to California for his daughter’s big day.
“Her magic day they planned for her father to be there. It was years in the making and they were saying in the last minute he couldn’t make it and they needed somebody to stand in for him,” California Highway Patrol Officer Jake Steel said.
So a tight-knit law enforcement circle got to work and put out a BOLO for a stand-in for the bride’s father.
An hour before her wedding, Rabe got a phone call from her mom.
“‘Hey, I pulled some strings,'” Rabe recalled her mother saying. “‘I was able to get a hold of some people and they found some people.’ And so she was like, ‘You actually have a chippie walking you down the aisle and your dad is so happy that somebody there can do that for him.”
Rabe and stand-in dad Steel met at the wedding venue minutes before the ceremony.
“A very proud moment,” Steel said. “Just knowing I’m there to help somebody out at their magic moment in time.”
“He showed up with his two beautiful children. So that was pretty amazing,” Rabe said.
And to top off an already incredible day, Steel even stepped in for the father-daughter dance.
“There were tears the minute it started,” he recalled.
When Steel was a teenager he lost his father, a CHP sergeant, to a head-on collision caused by a wrong-way driver.
“He also knows exactly how that feels to have his dad miss his special moments,” Rabe said.
“I was immersed in Amanda’s life for a small moment, yet it seemed like an eternity,” Steel said.
They say the wedding day has bonded them for life.
“It was absolutely like being taken into the family,” Steel said. “So it made me feel great for what I did.”
“It was wonderful to have him there,” Rabe said. “I don’t think words can ever describe having somebody just completely wrap you in their love and share that moment with you.”