War hero, bride renew vows in dream wedding

War hero, bride renew vows in dream wedding

FALLBROOK — Dozens of red roses set the scene for a romantic dream wedding for young military veteran Lance Cpl. Josue Barron and his wife Debbie when they renewed their vows at Los Willows Estates Jan. 15.

The wedding venue, food, liquor, flowers, photos and music were all provided free of charge to the couple by Los Willows Estates owners Cathie and Al Ransom and fellow wedding vendors in order to thank Barron for his military service.

“The colors are red, black and white,” Lisa Isaacson, Los Willows Estates wedding director, said.
“The flowers are red roses. The cake is to die for with black and white tiers. Everyone is going above and beyond to make this day special.”

Josue and Debbie exchanging rings. Photo courtesy Shadowcatcher Imagery

Josue originally married his wife Debbie in a brief civil ceremony shortly before he was deployed to Afghanistan in 2010. A few days after his deployment with the 3rd Battalion, 5th Regiment Marines from Camp Pendleton,  Barron was severely injured.

“Josue and Debbie are very, very deserving,” Al Ransom said. “Josue lost his leg and eye in Afghanistan and his wife has always been there by his side.”

Ransom met the couple after he told a friend who works as a therapist at Balboa Navy Hospital that he was interested in providing a free wedding to a military couple to thank all servicemen and servicewomen for their sacrifices.

After Barron was suggested to be the recipient of the free wedding, Los Willows Estates staff helped him plan a surprise proposal to his wife to renew their vows. The couple was invited to tour Los Willows Estates. Debbie wasn’t at all expecting the proposal when her husband got down on his knee and proposed.

Josue and Debbie Barron shortly after their ceremony at Los Willows. Photo courtesy Shadowcatcher Imagery

Debbie said “yes,” and with help from staff at Los Willows Estates they began to plan her dream wedding, which took place at the estate lakeside gazebo with a tented reception area for 100 guests.

“We’ve always wanted to do something worthwhile for somebody,” Isaacson said. “We have all the vendors. We have the site. We called our vendors and it was contagious giving.”

When Debbie offered to pay to upgrade the wedding photography package, Al  found a donor who paid the price difference.

“We didn’t want them to pay anything,” Al said. “It’s really going to be a dream wedding. Whatever the bride wants she’s getting.”

Al has a special place in his heart for fellow servicemen and servicewomen. He is a retired Marine colonel who served for 30 years.

Al said he still recalls returning from Vietnam without community welcome or support.

He said he is glad that there is community support for troops who are currently serving.

The first dance. Photo courtesy Shadowcatcher Imagery

“There is not enough we can do for these young soldiers that have put their lives on the line for our nation,” Cathie said. “What is truly inspiring is how these magnificent wounded warriors have stood up and faced their injuries and the inner strength that keeps them so positive about their future, their military brothers in arms and America.”


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