AUSTIN, Texas -- When her grandparents celebrated their 63rd wedding anniversary, photographer Shalyn Nelson knew she had to do something special to honor their love story.
"They have taught me the true meaning of marriage. It's worth fighting for. No marriage is perfect, and my grandparents will be the first to tell you that. But they never gave up. They never let their vows down. Ever...Only love matters at the end of this life, when all is said and done. Love always wins."
She asked her Papaw, Joe Ray, and Mamaw, Billie Wanda Johnson, if they would recreate their wedding day with a new photo shoot.
"I remember when I called my Mamaw to tell her the idea," she said. "I was really excited and she was kind of confused at first. I had to convince her a bit and explain to her that it would be fun! She kept saying, "Well, what will I wear Shalyn!" I told her to trust me, and she did. I could tell as the weeks following up to the shoot, she was less weary, and more and more excited. She went with it, and my Papaw is always down for anything. I don't even think he knew exactly what he was doing that day, lol. I just showed up with my team of talented friends and had my Mamaw relay the message to have his best suit ready. After all was said and done, she looked at me and said, "Well, that sure was special." And gave me a big hug."
The photo shoot was done in November 2014, but has recently gone viral.
**To view just some of the photos, watch the video player above**
It actually became part of a bigger project, "Love, The Nelsons." She plans to travel to couples all over the world, document their stories and photograph them. She hopes to eventually compile them into a book.
For much more on Shalyn and her project, click here.
Anyone can follow journey on Instagram: @shalynnelson. Her hashtags are: #lovethenelsonsproject #oldlovebook.