Mariana Kuhlman reflects on her husband Nathaniel (Nate) as she sits with his parents, Heather and Gordon, in their Florida home. Despite their deep loss after Nate’s tragic death on their honeymoon, there is a gentle joy and unwavering faith. Nate was the glue that brought their family together. Mariana and Nate met at Franciscan University and got married in 2023, but Nate passed away in a water-skiing accident just days after their wedding. Despite the brevity of their marriage, Mariana finds solace in the gift of new life as she joyfully expects their baby, due in July.
The National Catholic Register:
The newlyweds arrived in St. Lucia that Monday evening and got up in the morning for breakfast and waterskiing — something they both loved. Nathaniel was especially good at it, having been on a water-ski team in high school. He went first and skied slalom with just one ski.
“I was watching him and saw that he had fallen and gotten up,” Mariana recalled. Then she drifted into conversation with someone, not seeing that he fell a second time. Suddenly, the boat sped her young husband — unconscious — to shore. An ambulance soon took Nathaniel and Mariana to the hospital, where the doctor overrode the protocol of trying to revive someone for 15 minutes. He worked for 60 minutes, but finally told Mariana, “He’s not coming back.” An autopsy identified drowning as the cause of death.
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