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Photographer resurrects couple's old wedding photos destroyed by fire

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Many have said one of the most heartbreaking parts of dealing with a house fire is losing the old family photos.

That was the case for a Ringgold couple who thought their wedding memories were lost forever. But their photographer was able to resurrect every single picture, more than a decade after they walked down the aisle.

"There was absolutely nothing left," recalled Julie Grier.

Grier, her husband Tommy, and two boys were lucky they weren't home the night a fire destroyed their home in November 2014. 

Their house would be rebuilt, their possessions could be replaced, but the worst thing, they thought, was losing their old photos, especially those from the couple's wedding day.

"That was one of the things we were really upset about losing," Grier said.

"You see people going through the rubble, trying to find pictures. We've seen this play out so much," said Ringgold photographer, Greg Beasley.

Beasley shot the Griers' wedding nearly 13 years ago.

"I was so worried," Grier said. "I was worried that he didn't have our pictures anymore, the film or anything."

A photographer for 26 years, Beasley said he's never destroyed a negative. He tracked down the originals from 2003.

"I just felt for Julie and Tommy," he said. "I thought, well, I'll give them one less thing to worry about."

Beasley spent the past year developing the old photos, and transforming them into a modern album.

They're memories the Griers didn't know they'd get back.

"He went above and beyond," she said. "I could not thank him enough."

Because these were more than just pictures.

Sentimental things that were forever lost in the fire were captured by Beasley's lens.

"My great-grandmother gave me a pearl necklace that she wanted me to have the day of my wedding. We have pictures of that," Grier explained. "Then of course, my wedding dress. I don't have that anymore. So just the memory of that. And then family members that have passed since. (We have) the memory of them being there."

The Griers are grateful to now have this reminder of their special day. Beasley said he's just happy he helped preserve the pictures for future generations.

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