Stolen wedding dress crisis averted thanks to 911 operator

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ABC News

Posted on August 16, 2013 at 6:00 PM

(ABC News) -- It was supposed to be the happiest day of bride-to-be Amanda's life, but then the unthinkable happened.

Just hours before she was walking down the aisle on Aug. 11, her wedding dress was stolen from her car right outside her Kent, Wash., apartment complex.

"I'm calling to report my stuff stolen," Amanda, 23, told the 911 dispatcher.

"I'm sorry, you said your truck was stolen?," the dispatcher asked.

"No! I'm trying to- … My … My wedding dress!," the distraught bride said, barely mustering the words.

"My dress was worth $6,000," Amanda, who did not want her last name used, told ABC News. "It was actually from a cousin of mine so she was handing it down to me. It was more sentimental value."

Getting married that same day, unsure of how she'd ever be able to remedy a stolen wedding dress, Harris unexpectedly found help from the complete stranger who'd been helping her all along, Candice, the 911 dispatcher, on the other end of the phone.

"The whole time I'm thinking, 'This girl needs a dress. She's getting married this evening,'" Candice, 28, said. "So I'm thinking, well, I have a dress. Maybe it will work for her."

The 911 dispatcher felt so bad for her, she asked her supervisor if she could offer to lend Amanda her own wedding dress.

"It was just an immediate reaction," said Candice. "I've been a bride so I can just put myself in her place about how horrified she would be. That's kind of the biggest part of the wedding."

Without missing a beat, Candice texted the responding police officer a picture of the dress, who showed it to Harris on the scene.

"Even seeing the pictures, I could tell it would fit me," said Amanda.

In what truly became a marriage miracle, Candice and her husband retrieved the dress from her parents' house and dropped it off with Amanda's fiancé.

The bride wore the gown, looking dazzling in the same dress Candice wore a year and a half earlier.

In the ultimate case of "something borrowed" leading to "something new," the forever-bonded brides met face-to-face for the first time on Aug. 15.

"I want you to know you're seriously an amazing person and not a lot of people would have done that," Amanda said to Candice.

"It feels so good she got to have a wedding dress on her wedding day," Candice said. "I've been a bride and I know that it's awesome. I made a new friend today."

ABC News' John Santucci and John Capell contributed to this report.

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