Navy seaman weds high school sweetheart in last-minute Reno airport ceremony

There are some couples who just can't wait to get married, and that's especially true for a U.S. Navy seaman and his fiancee, separated for nearly a year and by 8,000 miles. His trip to the altar stretched from the Middle East to Virginia, then to Chicago, Denver and, finally, Reno.

The couple didn't delay exchanging vows when he finally landed.

For Madison Meinhardt and Dylan Ruffer, the Reno-Tahoe International Airport wasn't the most romantic place on Earth, but it was available last-minute.

The high school sweethearts planned to marry earlier this year, but an unexpected extension of Ruffer's naval deployment forced them to postpone their special day. So when Ruffer was granted a six-day vacation after 11 months away from each other -- the couple didn't want to waste any time.

Meinhardt said, "Dylan asked me what I was going to be wearing at the airport. My dad joked around, saying I should wear my dress. And then it wasn't a joke anymore, when it actually happened."

Only minutes after Ruffer stepped off the plane -- right around midnight Monday night -- the couple was married in front of family and friends.

Grateful for Ruffer's service to the nation, airport officials decorated a space large enough for 150 guests complete with catering, DJ, and wedding cake.

Meinhardt said, "We were expecting a little wedding in the corner, maybe with like a couple people. Not all this, this is amazing."

And just to make sure their vows were guaranteed an on-time arrival, United Airlines put his flights on VIP status ensuring priority take-offs and landings.

Despite everything, Ruffer sounded like a bit like any other jet-lagged newly-married man. "I don't even know, it's all a blur," he said. "I don't know what to think."

An airport might not be anyone's first choice for a wedding, but if nothing else, Meinhardt and Ruffer prove it doesn't matter where the marriage takes off -- as long you land with someone you love.

Watch Bill Whitaker's full report above.

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