Some love stories just write themselves. Such is the case with Lt. Col. Brian McIntyre and his wife, Sgt. 1st Class Marsha McIntyre.
"We met in a little country church just south of Hattiesburg" just over a decade ago, said Brian. "It was just after Marsha had moved to the Hattiesburg area, which was probably around 2003 or so."
As stories go, there was a plot twist. Marsha was an enlisted Soldier and Brian was an officer in the Mississippi Army National Guard. They didn't know about each other being in the service.
"We knew each other outside of the military. It wasn't until she was reassigned to [Regimental Regional Training Institute] at Camp Shelby that we realized we were both in the military" he said.
They decided to find out what their best route would be.
"We realized we could be breaking regulations so we went to the command judge advocate and got a ruling. The rules are different today than they were then. We were told we couldn't date but there was no prohibition against being married, so we decided to get married in 2005."
Being married in the military has its challenges.
"It's a little different," said Marsha. "You have to be conservative in your actions. You can't hold hands or kiss or show any affection in uniform."
But there are upsides.
"It's good in other ways, because when I have to go to, say, NTC, and I'm gone for two months, she understands that because she's in the military too," he said. "So it's easier in some ways, being a dual military couple because we understand the service and the sacrifice that the other has to make."
Between the couple, they have four children. Two of them continue the military tradition.
"I have 2 boys from a previous marriage and Mac has two girls. Very blended family. Very blessed." Marsha continued "both the boys are in the Mississippi National Guard. We have a senior at the University of Southern Miss and a junior at USM, so we're proud of all of them and what they've chosen to pursue."
As for traditions, their Valentine's Day rituals are simple but meaningful.
"On Valentine's Day, we just spend some time together," Brian said. "Sometimes around Valentine's day, especially Hattiesburg, the 14th is a busy night with couples going out to eat and things like that so...we usually try to go out a little before the 14th and get a good meal together."
They added more pages to their love story by having their 2019 Valentine's Day time together at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, deployed with the 184th Sustainment Command.
"I'm just so thankful for her. Sometimes you meet people who complete you. She completes me. It's really good. We're almost at the point now where we can finish each other's sentences."