When Will Seaton marries his longtime girlfriend Ashley Schaus this October, he won’t just be exchanging vows with Schaus, he’ll also exchange “best friend vows” with Schaus’ younger sister, Hannah.
Ashley met Seaton in October 2010 and before the two of them started dating, Ashley, who is extremely close and protective of her 16-year-old sister who has Down syndrome and diabetes, made sure Seaton knew that she and her sister were a “package deal.”
“I have a sister with special needs and I would like you to accept her and love her just as you love me.”
While some might stray away upon hearing that their girlfriend’s sister needed to be included in their relationship, Seaton embraced Hannah. Ashley told 14 News that ever since that conversation in 2010 the trio have become inseparable. It’s not unusual for Ashley and Seaton to include Hannah in on their date nights, in fact it would be unusual to see the couple without Ashley’s 16-year-old sister.
“He takes me fishing and makes funny jokes,” Hannah told ABC News. “He makes me laugh and takes care of me.”
It was because of this special friendship that when Ashley and Seaton started to discuss the possibility of them getting married that they wanted to include Hannah in any way possible.
“I wanted to include Hannah in the proposal in case she may not get to experience that.”
Seaton told TODAY that he already considers the teenager a sister, so it was no question that when he asked Ashley to marry him, he would also ask Hannah to be his best friend forever.
So, in March 2016 when Ashley, Hannah, and Seaton gathered in a field of daffodils, a place where the Schaus family takes photos every year, Seaton got down on one knee and asked Hannah a very important question and presented her with a family heirloom, the Schaus’ grandmother’s ring.
“She started crying and then I started crying,” Ashley told 14 News. “I didn’t even cry when he proposed to me. He got down on one knee and asked Hannah to be his ‘Best Friend Forever.'”
When the couple marries in October, Hannah will be right by their side, as the “best sister.” In addition to receiving the honor of being the “best sister,” Hannah will exchange best friends vows with Seaton and share a dance with him to Harry Nilsson’s “Best Friend” at the reception. Ashley even said that the three friends will walk down the aisle after she exchanges her vows with her fiancé.
Ashley says that Hannah will be apart of every aspect of the wedding and looks forward to spending the rest of her life with Seaton and Hannah.
“I want Hannah right by my side throughout everything,” Ashley told FOX 5 Atlanta. “And someday in the future, whenever Will and I start a family, I know that Hannah will be a big part of helping raise our child. She will be a great aunt.”