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Crash mars wedding

By Emily Norman

[email protected]

A Masterton wedding ceremony took a turn for the worst on Saturday when the bride’s 19-year-old brother was seriously injured in a car crash on SH2.

Three of the bride’s brothers had been in a vehicle leaving Soulway Church when it was T-boned by a southbound car.

Police, ambulance, and fire crews attended the 3pm crash, which closed a section of SH2 for about an hour.

Pastor Rik Edmonds of Soulway Church said the southbound car had been driven by a “local kaumatua who was coming back from a tangi out at Te Ore Ore”.

The collision happened as the bride’s brother’s car exited the church driveway, he said.

“When I heard the crash and by the time I got out, a couple of the wedding guests had extracted [the kaumatua] from the vehicle, afraid the vehicle was going to explode,” he said.

“Someone smelled petrol, so they bravely pulled her out of the car, and pulled her over to the footpath whereupon I saw her collapsing.

“That’s when I entered the scene.”

Mr Edmonds said the bride’s 19-year-old brother, “a young fella in the back seat”, was “knocked out by the impact” of the crash.

“They had to get the jaws of life to extract him.

“It was quite a downer on what was a very exciting event.”

The young man has since been discharged from hospital, and Mr Edmonds said he was thankful the outcome was not worse.

“It’s something you don’t see too often,” he said.

“We had a prayer meeting on the middle of SH2. There were people helping, sending their prayers, there was a whole bunch that were helping, like coming over and giving their coats to the lady that was on the footpath.

“We just grabbed all the peeps right there and then and said, right, you profess to be Christians, do the Christian thing.”

The couple’s wedding celebration was the result of the church pulling together to make it all happen, as “money was tight” for them.

“In this modern age, marriage is just an option, but the look on the bride’s face when she had her white dress on, and had all the trimmings, she was just in heaven.

“And then to be brought down like that. I thought no, this is not right, this is not fair.”

When the spontaneous prayer meeting finished on SH2, wedding guests vowed to “not let [the crash] overshadow the day”.

“Of course, it was hard not to . . . but as we were sitting down having our meal, two of the brothers walked back in, and well, the place just erupted.

“They were released from hospital. Then we went into dance and singing, so it ended up being good.”

Masterton Fire Service station officer Garry Nielsen said the “significant impact” of the crash had caused serious damage to the driver’s side of the vehicle.


  1. This is a great outcome. It’s good to see a Church like Soulway helping young people who want to do the right thing. Giving practical support to provide for the wedding is certainly walking the talk.

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Emily Ireland
Emily Ireland
Emily Ireland is Wairarapa’s Local Democracy Reporter, a Public Interest Journalism role funded through NZ On Air. Emily has worked at the Wairarapa Times-Age for seven years and has a keen interest in council decision-making and transparency.

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