Photography by Ro Ducay
When I first met Drew, he felt like an old friend, someone I could share everything with. As we’ve grown closer, it’s also been fun to realize the differences between us, which can sometimes make me love Drew the most because I learn about life in new ways. Through it all, Drew has become more and more my best friend, my go-to-person, my support, my encouragement, the one who is never too busy to drop everything to be by my side, the one who points me to God each and every day. Drew has a way of making me feel empowered and loved and taken care for all in one moment. You rarely find people who truly sharpen you as God calls us to do - iron upon iron. This is why I want him by my side my whole life. Drew is one of the most intelligent, driven, God-seeking men I know and by God’s grace I happen to have stolen his heart. I am blessed by his love every day. He can be goofy, sweet, romantic, spontaneous, driven, and compassionate, but he is Drew. That is all I will ever need. He’ll keep me on my toes, and laughing until it hurts, and feeling more love than I could ever wish for. I fell in love with Drew because he both gets me and pushes me, and that will keep me falling for him the rest of our lives.
I remember the first time Katherine and I went on a date (even though I thought she had a boyfriend at the time) that I was nervous like I hadn’t ever been. I even texted my sister telling her that “This could be someone very special.” She is the sweetest, most caring, passionate, fun personality I have ever met and she is the only one who I want to see at the end of my day. I want her by my side, because I have never felt so much support of anyone in my life. She believes in me even more than I believe in myself, and she is always the one that I want to go to to let off steam, to have her advice, and to face the future with. She is so beautiful to me, her smile makes me feel like I have won at living life. She brings out the best in me, as she does with everyone she is around. So much so that I have had multiple people from my family come up to me to tell them that they would be on her side of any and all arguments. She is everything I want to be around and the only person I want to make a lifetime of memories with.
It began with a 4 month window in which we could have met and fell for each other. Drew worked as a teller for a bank, Katherine an animal care assistant for an animal hospital. During the summer, Katherine made deposits for her clinic at the bank and Drew would make small talk with her. Come August, Katherine found out Drew went to her church and Drew found out they had been/were SPU students! Katherine and some of her friends went swing dancing almost every week that summer and she invited Drew one Friday because they needed more leads and she thought he was a pretty cool kid. The drive there turned from a group of friends to Katherine and Drew driving together all the way to Kirkland to meet up with them. When Drew arrived at Katherine’s house, he saw how fancy Katherine looked and began to worry he was underdressed. As she finished getting ready, he texted all his girl friends to ask if he looked alright. That car ride was the first time they had spoke outside of work and they immediately fell into what felt like an old friendship. The night was full of laughter as Katherine taught Drew some swing moves and the crush began. As the night went on, Katherine was tired and hungry. Drew let her know he was there for her, thinking they may go pick up fast food somewhere on the way home. Katherine recommended Dicks and off they went on their first accidental date, eating scrambled eggs and eggs benedict at 11:30 in the morning.
Drew invited Katherine to a bon fire the next night, one that, at the time, did not actually exist. When she said she’d be there, Drew texted all his friends, telling them they needed to show up for this thing. Unbeknown to Katherine, the thrown together bon fire was lots of fun. Just the next day, Drew asked what Starbucks drink he could bring to church for Katherine while she greeted at the front door. And just the day after, Drew invited her to have lunch with him in Magnolia, since it was convenient and all.
The fifth time they saw each other outside of work was when Katherine got bit on both hands by a husky. It is a longer story but she was trying to stop a dog fight and somewhat foolishly got her hands too close to their teeth and then she was bleeding everywhere and calling 911. Her next call was to her best friend but everyone was at work as she realized it was 3pm in the afternoon. Being it summer, Drew was out with his small group boys having a fantastic time boating and laying in the sun. When Katherine called him, he was excited to hear from her, and was met by the shaky voice telling him what had happened. He asked where she was and within minutes he walked through the door and found her shaking and covered in blood. He sat her down and gave her some water and cleaned off her legs and feet with a towel. He helped her talk to officers and called her dad for her. Their first conversation was about the crisis. He took her to the hospital and was there with her every step, keeping her smiling and warm and kept her mind off the pain with silly stories and jokes. That night he fed her chinese, with her hands bandaged in casts, while they watched Finding Nemo. This is when she fell for him.
The next few weeks were full of fun summer dates and on September 3rd, 2014, we were walking around the Ballard Locks and made it official. And we’ve never looked back.
Drew and Katherine had their first official date at Via Tribunali. The restaurant is tucked away in Queen Anne and after eating delicious pizza, they had walked over to enjoy Kerry Park.
On the night he proposed, Drew called Katherine after work, much like any other night, asking what she would like to do. She replied that she didn't know and he told her he had an idea and that he would pick her up for dinner, he had a surprise for her.
They headed off towards Queen Anne so Katherine guessed they were going back to Via Tribunali, and sure enough, there they were, their first time back since their first date. Nothing seemed abnormal, Drew was surprisingly cool and collected, and Katherine didn't expect this to be the night - I mean it was a random Monday! They arrived at this little piece of Italy and started reminiscing over their first time there and how far they had come. As the night went on, Katherine started realizing tonight could be the night. They had been talking about getting engaged for quite a while, had shopped for engagement rings, and talked about when to get married. But after they had eaten dinner and nothing had happened, she decided this wasn't it.
After dinner, Katherine conveniently recommended they go to Kerry Park to fully reenact that night in August, Drew's plan all along. As they walked to view the skyline, Drew mentioned how he was "glad the weather turned out this way"; it was somewhat rainy, dark, and overcast with the city lighting up the fog while still being fairly clear. They enjoyed the view and then Drew turned to Katherine to say "I love you". She smiled and repeated the words, starting to suspect something. He went on, "The more I have thought about this moment, the more I had planned the words to say..." Katherine, knowing Drew's joking nature, could imagine him saying "...but I'm not proposing tonight!" Instead he kept talking and she thought: “Oh my gosh! It's happening! Pay attention to what he's saying!" Drew was smiling and saying, "...every time I thought of the words, I kept thinking that I love you so much, and I want to spend the rest of my life showing you how much I love you". He got down on one knee in that Seattle rain and opened a box complete with it’s own LED light to reveal the sparkling, perfect ring. And then those four little words, “Will you marry me?”
Katherine said yes! Obviously. And then the real adventure began.
Katie Lattman - Maid Of Honor
Katie is my cousin and my best friend. She’s the big sister I never had. Katie is short for Kathryn and we were always doing the same things and saying the same things so created a team name to explain how similar we were: K Power.
We spent our young years with Barbie's and Polly Pockets, swimming in our grandparents pool pretending to be mermaids and dolphins. We road ski bobs behind our grandparents boat, gossiped about everything, transitioned through our teens together, kept each others secrets, and have always had each others back. We grew up with sleepovers, shopping, and all sorts of adventures.
Katie and I had to part ways when she went to OSU. But we stayed in touch, even when she studied abroad in France and fell in love with Lyon. I headed to Seattle for SPU but over the last 4 years we've stayed close. Now Katie just got her dream job at UC Berkley but Skyping is a life saver.
Katie is such a beautiful woman inside and out. She is always ready to take her questions to God and let him lead her to the next exciting chapter of her life, it has always inspired me in my faith. I don’t know anyone with a bigger heart than her and I have always loved her ability to make me laugh and feel at ease. Whenever I need someone, Katie’s my person. The one I turn to to laugh with, cry with, vent with. She gets me and also helps me see the world in new lights, and always brings it back to God’s plans and desires for our lives. She knows me best and I am honored and excited to have my best friend by my side on Drew's and my wedding day.
Brittany Waite - Bridesmaid
Brittany is my little sis, we grew up in Beaverton, riding our bikes that we pretended were horses in our cul de sac. We caught tadpoles in a nearby pond, climbed every tree we could, and were constantly making forts and throwing tea parties for our friends. Brittany quickly fell in love with computer games and learning how to throw in her own cheat codes. When I needed help with a game, I asked Brittany, she always figured them out and beat them first. She always took the blue things (gameboys, slippers, lunch boxes, and stuffed animals), I always had to have the pink ;) While our passions don’t always overlap, we're learning how to love our differences.
When Brittany picked a college it was no surprise that she found Neumont, a gaming and programming school in Utah. She is such a hard worker and takes pride in everything she makes. She is an empathetic, thoughtful, and adventurous person.
Janelle Wee - Bridesmaid
Janelle! My best friend from Seattle Pacific University. She and I made it through our years as Biology/Physiology majors, taking breaks for Thai food and crafts, drinking Bee's Knees at Bustle and chatting about life. We took Gospel Choir together and shared our love for music. We were good study buddies, finding fun ways to make it through classes like Biochemistry and Cell Biology.
When I first met Janelle, I couldn't believe we hadn't been best friends for years, we hit it off and have only become closer. She always understands me, lifts me up, and is always ready for an adventure. Our trips to Pike Place, Gas Works, U District, and Fremont are some of my favorite memories from college.
One of my favorite things about Janelle is she loves Jesus with her whole heart. She is always pointing to him and shining his light through her. We have shared our questions, fears, praises, and excitement over what God is doing in our lives. I also love her Korean food ;) And every time I love something of hers, she tells me it's from Korea and our plan is to go there so I can finally be as cute as she is. She is one of the sweetest, kindest, selfless women of God I know.
Since graduating from SPU we are helping each other become adults and figure out life post-college. After all we've been though, I can't imagine my wedding without Janelle holding my hand and laughing with me the whole day.
Maddy Salz - Bridesmaid
Maddy was one of the first people I met when I moved from Beaverton to Oregon City going into 6th grade. We didn’t go to the same middle school but we went to the same church, where her parents and mine became close friends. Consequently we spent a lot of time together and I remember years later Maddy admitting to me that at first she hadn’t liked me all that much! But after time, we became the best of friends. We have been to countless church summer camps together, girl scout camp, and winter retreats. We have grown in our faith together, and been there for each other through thick in thin, leaning on each other for love and support.
Maddy is the sort of person you go to for advice. She is an amazing listener and always gives you truth and direction. She embodies a strong, successful, compassionate woman of God. I look up to her wisdom, love, and drive.
The years have brought many new adventures to us both, drawing us physically away from each other. But Maddy is one of those rare friends that when it’s time for a goodbye, you know that you are going to make sure and see them as soon as you can, and when you do you’ll be able to start up right where you left off. We have been talking about being in each others weddings since we were young teenages. The fact that I can now have her by my side on this big day is such a blessing.
Kate McMurry - Bridesmaid
Kate is Drew's older sister, and while I met her through him, Kate is now a great friend. When I first met Kate, she was warm, funny, and wonderful to hang out with. Yet I was slightly intimidated because she is such a strong woman who is ready to fight for what she wants. After getting to know her, I deeply respect and appreciate her drive and passion for life. She is such a smart, caring, thoughtful, beautiful woman who I am blessed to have as a new sister!
Pretty early on to me coming into the picture, Kate told Drew that if we (Drew and I) got in a fight, she would be on my side. That's when I knew she truly liked me and ever since we've grown closer, sharing life, enjoying holidays, going to movies, and playing board games together. She is such a down to earth, easy to talk to, up for an adventure kind of woman. I’m excited for the years to come with her!
Sydney Marcotte - Bridesmaid
Sydney is my friend from Oregon City High School and continues to be one of my closest friends. When we see each other, we pick up where we left off. We actually met back in our 7th grade choir where you would have never guessed we would come to like each other.
Entering high school was where it all began, right in our Pre-Algebra class with Mrs. Beatty. We sat next to each other and after a few days, we found out we had a lot in common. We loved choir, were math geeks, cared a lot about friends and family, and lived 15 minutes away from each other. Thus began our friendship.
We got ready for school dances together, studied for AP Calculus tests, gossiped about our parents rules on our lives, and toured around the state with the two choirs we were in: Master Choir and Rendezvous. We spent summers under the stars on her trampoline and swimming in my grandparents pool. We watched Winnie-the-Pooh together when one of us was sick and helped each other through high school relationships.
Sydney made me more outgoing and confident in myself, she helped me view the world in a new light and I will forever be grateful that we have kept in touch despite the distance. She is now working in Missoula, Montana where her boyfriend is doing his Masters. Drew's and my wedding day will be all the more wonderful with Syd's encouragement and fun nature.
James Cannariato-Best Man
I first met James at SPU on 5th Hill, and being quite honest we did not like each other at all. It’s amazing how our relationship has changed over time, to now he is my best man. James and I really became friends our sophomore year when we lived across the hall from one another in the dorms and kind of couldn’t get away from each other. James taught me how to be confident in myself, but also how to love Jesus fiercely. I have always wanted to have a brother, and even though I am older than James, I don’t look up to anyone more than I look up to him. He is a great leader, a great friend who will get excited with you, and someone who isn’t afraid to let you know when you are wrong. But beyond that, he is also not afraid when he is wrong. He learns from his mistakes and is someone who I admire more than most in the world. I am honored and blessed to have him in my life and it is exciting to know that our families will grow up together.
Karl Schmidt- Groomsman
Karl was my roommate when I first moved to SPU, and we were roommates all throughout college. You always hear about success stories of roommates becoming best friends, and I was lucky enough to have that in Karl. From shooting guns, to football games, to eating more hot wings and Chipotle than is good for us, Karl has been one of the easiest going, fun guys I have ever had the chance of meeting. What is amazing to me is that he is so humble for achieving so much, you will never find a man who is more willing to lay down what he is doing so that he can help you. I have come to rely on Karl as a trusted friend and advisor in my life, because I know that in the end, he has my best interest at heart, and to have him as a brother is a blessing beyond words.
Ethan Moody- Groomsman
The day that I met Ethan was a day I will always remember, because we spent a solid 6 hours debating theology in the Hill Hall lounge. I met Ethan through James and I remember after that day always asking James “Hey, do you want to see if Ethan wants to hang out?” Ethan is the most thoughtful individual I have ever met, and he and I have had hours of long discussions debating politics, theology, business, anything under the sun. Ethan makes me think beyond my normal process to see a bigger picture. Beyond debates however, he is one of the funniest, fun, caring individuals I have in my life. I know that if I have any questions, any prayer requests, anything I need help with, I know Ethan is always ready to answer my call or be where I need him. I know his family, I know his heart, and I know I want to hang around him so that I can learn how to be a better man and follower of God through Him.
Tom Essenpreis- Groomsman
I met Tom at SPU in the dorms as well, and his friendship has been a great one because it is the truest friendship I have. Tom and I didn’t spend much time together in college, we mostly ran in separate circles (save for one spring break trip), but it was after college that we became close friends. Tom reached out to me one day and asked if I wanted to get a beer with him at Prost, and ever since then I have had Tom consistently reach out when other friends have fallen away. It is Tom’s loyalty, his generosity, his heart, and his kindness that has changed who I am outside of school. Tom has helped me through a lot of things, just by being there when I need him to be, just by being my friend, and I am forever grateful that he is in my life.
Marc Phillips- Groomsman
I have always wanted to have a brother, and I have a great one in Marc. My future brother-in-law, and an all around great guy, my first words to my sister when I met him were “He just seems too nice.” But it isn’t an illusion or act, Marc is exactly the kind of man I want to have around at Thanksgiving and Christmas; he is genuine, willing to put others before himself, and accepts people without fault or reservation. The only downside to Marc is he now makes me look bad in comparison to the family, so I have to step up my game. I haven’t enjoyed someones company in my family as much as I have with Marc and I am so happy to have him become part of it.
Daniel Hamilton- Groomsman
I can safely say that Dan is the funniest individual I have ever met, and I emulate him more than most of the people I hang out with. Whether it be passion for football, soccer, America, or BBQ’s, Dan is the kind of person who jumps in head first and I can always count on him to jump on the bandwagon of whatever ridiculous idea I may have. Always light hearted, always willing to say “What’s next?”, always wanting to help out and have fun. But he is also one of the most generous people I know, and it is only by the grace of God that I have gotten to have such a great man in my life.