Natalie Crowe and Austin Tatman were one another’s very first best friends. The pair were each just 5-years-old when they first met back in 1999. They were in the same pre-kindergarten class in Ocala, Florida, and quickly connected. Crowe and Tatman spent every moment they could together, their connection captured in sweet photographs taken by their parents.
When Crowe moved from Florida to Connecticut with her family, she lost touch with Tatman for the time being. However, that was hardly where their story ended, according to Today.
It had been 12 years since Crowe had seen Tatman when he randomly popped into her head again. She recalled the many wonderful memories she’d made with him at her side, riding in her father’s boat together or holding hands while they went trick-or-treating.
In the summer of 2012, she decided to flip through her mother’s old address book to see what information she could gather upon the boy who made such a strong impression on her memory. With her curiosity piqued, Crowe decided to take a chance and message Tatman on Facebook to see if he would be interested in catching up. As it turned out, he hadn’t forgotten her either.
Crowe and Tatman exchanged cell phone numbers and realized that Crowe’s father lived only 10 minutes from Tatman’s home in Florida. They pair decided to meet up and connected once more, this time as adults. Tatman recalled the moment he and Crowe reunited after so many years apart. They were both much older, but it didn’t feel like the bond between them had changed.
“It was just like being back with your best friend that you haven’t seen, which was the craziest experience for me. You can never replicate that… being away from someone and reconnecting.”
It wasn’t long before the pair’s bond turned into a romance, and by 2017, they were engaged. Their parents, recalling the bond their children had at a young age, couldn’t be more supportive of their relationship.
“From the second that we met in pre-K we were best friends. Our parents pretty much told us that it was a very, very special bond that we shared,” said Crowe. “They were both over the moon about us getting together.”
At their wedding, the pair had to, of course, give a nod to the way their relationship began many years ago. They recreated an old photo taken of them while they were little in which they both sat in a Barbie Jeep. This time, they sat on a real Jeep, Crowe in her wedding dress.