Megan Foley and John Taylor III
Sept. 7, 2019 in Chesterfield, N.J.
Ten friends of a sailor celebrated his weekend leave at Silk City Diner. The two who hadn’t met before they noticed each other immediately.
“It was definitely his dark hair,” said Megan.
“She has very pretty eyes,” said John.
Megan introduced herself that night in September 2012, and the two began unraveling the knots that tied them to Geoff the sailor.
“We found out we even lived next door to each other for a summer in Wildwood,” says John, who grew up in Northeast Philadelphia’s Pine Valley neighborhood.
They clicked. They exchanged contact info and, at evening’s end, a quick kiss goodbye.
Later that week, it was just the two of them at the Dandelion. Before Date 1 was even over, John asked Megan for Date 2 and Megan, who hails from Lawncrest, swooned.
“The first thing I loved about John is that he does not like to play games,” she said. “He always made me feel like I was important, and he showed me right away he wanted to be with me.” She admired how loyal he was to his friends, admired his brain, and adored his dog, Layla. “I fell in love with her, too.” Megan said.
John fell for Megan’s smarts and how great it was just to talk to her. “When you bring up a point she thinks is valid, she’s elaborating on it. Or, if she doesn’t agree, she’s allowing you to look at something in a different light,” he said. “She’s also very caring, and just an overall good person.”
When he wasn’t managing Baby Blues BBQ in University City and she wasn’t considering items as an assistant buyer for the Deb Shops, they hiked, camped, cheered on Philly’s sports teams, and saw concerts.
How long before they were serious?
“After a month,” John says, no hesitation. This makes Megan laugh. “After three months, I had to ask him, ‘Are you my boyfriend? Because people are asking, and I want to know.'” He said yes.
It was about then that John told Megan he felt a westward pull. “I had been thinking about moving to Southern California for a long time. I asked her if she would be willing to move to California with me, to make a life for ourselves there.”
And so in July 2013, they moved to Los Angeles. Rent went from $1,000 to $2,600, and both worked multiple jobs to pay it. After three years of adventure and exhaustion, they moved to Denver, where John became the general manager of a music venue, Megan waited tables and launched a dog-walking business, and they embraced the great outdoors.
In April 2018, John told Megan he had invited several friends to join them on a hike to the top of St. Mary’s Glacier to celebrate her birthday.
At the picturesque peak, John suggested they take a photo. “While she was scoping out exactly where we should stand, I got down on one knee and told her what she meant to me, then asked, ‘Will you marry me?’”
“I cried for a long time,” Megan remembers. “Then I said, ‘Yes! Of course!’”
With engagement came a change in geographic perspective. “When we decided we wanted to start putting down roots, it seemed the best place possible was where we both grew up,” John said.
In July 2019, they moved back home, and now live in Center City with Ellie, an English pointer. Megan continues to walk dogs. John recently took the Philadelphia Fire Department’s entrance test, the first step toward his goal of becoming a city firefighter. John would be following a family tradition established by his grandfather, John and his father, John Jr., who died in the line of duty in 2004.
The couple were wed and celebrated with 150 guests at the Estate at Eagle Lake. Geoff the sailor was a groomsman. John’s brother, Dan, became ordained online to officiate. He told their love story, then asked them to share the vows they had written for each other.
“I promised to keep growing with him, loving and appreciating him every day,” said Megan.
“I promised to keep growing with her, and to keep doing what makes us happy: Trying to avoid the conventional and traditional. And to try to make her laugh every day.”
A picture of John’s beloved father was displayed on a memorial table. So were photos of the couple’s grandparents, John’s friend Brian, and Layla, the late golden retriever.
The song playing during the couple’s first dance was “To Love Somebody,” originally recorded by the Bee Gees, and more recently by The Revivalists, one of their favorite bands. Years ago, when John first heard it, he brought it to Megan to listen. “When I hear this, I think of us,” he told her. It’s been their song ever since.
Megan entered the ceremony to Leon Bridges’ “Beyond,” and for John, that song won’t ever be the same. “She looked very beautiful, and I was so excited to finally be where we wanted to be forever,” he remembered. Hearing the song recently “put a smile on my face, and brought me right back there.”
All morning, Megan worried about tripping over her dress in front of 150 people. After taking a few careful steps down the stairway aisle, she paused and looked up. “When I made eye contact with John, it made me feel so much calmer,” she said. There were no more thoughts about her feet.
A bargain: The night before the wedding, Megan bought the best of the season’s flowers from Produce Junction and Trader Joe’s and arranged them into her big bouquet of hydrangea and calla lily as well as table centerpieces. She found the process relaxing, and the flowers cost only $250.
The splurge: The couple knew their friends would want to toast them. Repeatedly. “We paid too much money for alcohol to make sure we were ready,” John said.
A week on the beach in Newport, R.I.
Officiant: Dan Dunn, brother of the groom, ordained online, Venice, Calif.
Venue: The Estate at Eagle Lake, Chesterfield, N.J.
Food: Baby Blues BBQ, Philadelphia
Music: Jason Clark of EMCE Entertainment, Philadelphia
Photography: Emma Dallman Photography, Philadelphia
Flowers: Trader Joe’s and Produce Junction, Glenside, Pa.
Megan’s makeup: Kelsey Hillier
John’s attire: Men’s Wearhouse, Philadelphia
Decor: Deb Pigott of Relic ReDo, Chesterfield, N.J.