MARTINSBURG, W.Va. --
When U.S Air Force Tech. Sgt. Johnathen Guzik’s fiancée, Angela, suggested they get married in a C-17 Globemaster III aircraft, he thought, “no chance.”
But on Oct. 19, the couple exchanged vows in the cargo hold of a C-17 parked on the ramp of the 167th Airlift Wing in Martinsburg, West Virginia.
Guzik, an aircraft metals technician for the 167th Maintenance Group, initially dismissed the idea of getting married on base thinking there would be too many obstacles to coordinate the ceremony, especially on an aircraft. Angela, on the other hand, a Navy brat who grew up on military bases, was excited and optimistic about the idea from the beginning.
Both agreed that the biggest challenge was limiting the number of people on their guest list.
Angela was escorted by her son down the aisle, or rather through the cargo bay, as the couples’ parents and Guzik’s children stood by the sidewall passenger seats near the front of the cargo area.
Staff Sgt. Justin Watson was the best man and Watson’s son was the ring bearer.
With sunlight streaming in from the open cargo doors in the rear of the aircraft, Tech Sgt. Corey Chaney, an aircraft electrician for the 167th Maintenance Group, officiated the wedding in front of the cockpit access stairs. Chaney said he had never considered being a wedding officiant but got ordained when the couple asked him to marry them.
“I was excited to help some friends of mine out,” said Chaney, who is neighbors with the Guziks.
Chaney’s previous military instructor training came in handy for his new gig.
“I leaned on my training that I received at McGhee Tyson during the instructor certification course, and some instructor training while I was in aircrew flight equipment, to help me prepare for how I would present and keep the flow of the wedding,” Chaney said. “I was truly honored that I could be part of their big day.”
A military base without a chapel isn’t a likely place to have a wedding. Though the Guzik’s wedding was a small, private occasion, it was an historic one nonetheless for the 167th AW.
“Everything went off without a hitch. It went great and we’re super happy,” said Angela.