Rockford, Ill (WIFR) -- Jon and Amanda Rush are Rockford super fans.
“We love Rockford!” the couple said.
Both moved to Rockford nine years ago, Jon from Florida and Amanda from New York, for an internship at City First church. Soon after, they fell in love with the area and each other.
“So when I first moved here I didn't know if this was going to be my forever home,” Amanda said, “And I just started seeing the unique gems in Rockford. I noticed this guy and definitely had my eye on him."
"I come from Orlando. It's a place where everyone loves to come to, and I fell in love with this idea of Rockford, because at the time, it was a place no one wanted to come to,” Jon said, “And something about that narrative and that story just made me want to be here."
Their love for the city and seeing it become a thriving region became a core piece of their relationship. So much so, they decided to get married on Rockford Day - August 15 - four years ago.
"When we saw the opportunity to have our wedding on 815, we didn't look for that,” said Jon. “But now forever, Rockford, in the same way Rockford has shaped us forever, now there’s a piece of our family history that will forever reflect that."
They celebrate their wedding anniversary just a month after welcoming their first daughter into the world. Their love for the city continues to grow.
"I want to be in Rockford. I believe in Rockford. My husband believes in Rockford. We want to be here,” Amanda said.
And they believe their love story a testament to the region’s desire to attract and keep families.
“"No town or family or school has it all together, but if citizens invest we can see every day, ordinary, even with Rockford, scary and dangerous and depressed things turn around,” Jon said.