PHOTOS | Paraplegic veteran surprises bride with wheelchair-free dance

FISHERS, Ind. (November 11, 2014) - Sgt. Joe Johnson, who served in Afghanistan, pulled off a wedding surprise his wife, Michelle, will never forget.

He joined her for their first dance without a wheelchair!

Joe, 27, suffered a spinal cord injury in a motorcycle accident shortly after returning from overseas. He suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder after serving in Afghanistan and rode motorcycles for the rush.

"I was going too fast on a curvy road," said Joe in an interview with FOX59 News. "Sunglasses blew off. I was wearing no helmet."

He can't feel anything below his chest and is confined to a wheelchair. Joe said Michelle, who was his girlfriend at the time, was a big support system for him.

"She was there from day one to 100 and never left my side," said Joe. "And I couldn't think of anyone else that I wanted to be with."

Soon after, they were engaged!

Michelle, who is a wedding planner in Fishers, planned their whole wedding, but there was one special surprise she didn’t know about when they tied the knot in June.

Joe and his friends created a harness that would allow him to stand for their first dance.

"My stomach just dropped and I was just, I still get goosebumps like thinking about it, explained Michelle.

"It was so amazing just to see him and look at each other in the eyes."

Jennifer Davis, the LinneaLiz photographer who snapped photos of the dance, said the bride couldn't believe what she saw.

"When Michelle walked in the whole room was quiet, she had no idea what was going on. She saw Joey standing and she had a giant smile on her face which quickly turned to tears. Everyone was in tears," Davis recalled.

"Joey had been planning the dance for months and having his military groomsman literally supporting him added even more to the emotion in the room. The dance was a beautiful moment to not only capture but to experience.”

Their wedding was back in June, but the video of their special moment is getting noticed now after the couple did a recent interview on a national news show.

Check out video of the dance below:

Check out more of their wedding photos below:


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