A small gift Craig Strickland gave to his wife, Helen Strickland, on their wedding day is bringing her peace in the midst of tragedy.
The former Miss Arkansas USA shared a snippet of a wedding day video the country singer made for her before their 2014 nuptials. She uploaded the video to Instagram the same day that his body was found after being reportedmissing for seven days.
"On the day of our wedding, Craig had me watch a video he had made to tell me how much he loved me," she wrote. "I am so thankful for technology in this moment because I will always have this. I watched this privately prior to walking down the aisle, and so now I want to share this small excerpt with all of you."
In the clip, Craig declares his love for Helen.
"There would be times when we're sitting in our car and stuff, and you don't notice," he says with a big smile on his face. "But I'll look over and be like, 'This is the person that God has created for me' and that's really special to me. And I couldn't be more lucky."
A video posted by Helen Wisner Strickland (@helenelizabethstrickland) on
The widow also gave a special thanks to the people who helped her husband edit the "cherished" message.
"Thank you Lord for sharing #craigstrickland with me," she wrote. "You allowed me to borrow him on this earth, but he was always Yours. I will forever cherish our year of marriage. This was truly the type of man you were and will always be remembered as. I love you Craig Michael."
See photos of Craig Strickland:
Country star Craig Strickland found dead after hunting trip
Helen Elizabeth Strickland shares touching wedding video of late husband Craig
Thank you so much @kristinathomasphotography for sending these beautiful pictures of us. I am crying because they make my heart so full of love for this man. I love him with every fiber of my being. And I want to thank everyone for all the love, kind words and support they have sent to our family. Thank you for continuing to pray without stopping. Because of you we have been able to make it through this difficult time. Thank you for loving us and Chase's family.
Thank you @CrossChurch and @shilohsaints For holding a prayer session for Craig for the past two nights. I couldn't make it through life without all of you. Thank you to all the people who have come up, called, and messaged me to shower me with love. Thank you to @backroadanthem for loving me as a sister and being there for our family every step of the way. Thank you to all the OK law enforcement agencies that have cared so much through this crisis.
I'm sorry I can't thank everyone for everything you have done. But know that I love you and appreciate every single call, text, hug and prayer. To update everyone, the search for Craig has been called for the night and will resume in the morning. We love you and appreciate you more than words can say. Please continue to pray for both our and Chase's family.
From Little Rock last night to now sitting in a tree in Brown County Illinois... Ready to give an Illinois buck a ride in the back of the truck... 👊🏼
Thank you everyone who will be there tonight. You have no idea what that means to me and does for my heart. I am so blessed to have my CrossChurch and Shiloh family. I wouldn't be able to walk through this difficult moment without all of you. Thank you all. Love you ❤️
Merry Christmas from the Stricklands ☺️ #PrettyWife #Christmas
#missusa2015 with my love ❤️ @backroadcraig
I'm so incredibly happy a member of our Vanbros family won it!!! So proud to have judged you at Miss OK USA @missusa! You did amazing!! 👑💖👏🏻
Well that was fun... #KendrickFincher #Arkansas
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On Jan. 4, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol Marine Enforcement Divisionrecovered Craig's body in an area referred to as Bear Creek Cove. The 29-year-old singer and his friend Chase R. Morland, 22, were first reported missing following a duck hunting trip. Chase's body was found on Dec. 28.
"The night of the accident he had fought his way out of the water and up a hill before the stages of hypothermia set in," she wrote on Instagram. "He experienced no pain in his final moments and simply felt like he was falling asleep. They found him lying in the shape of a cross looking up to his Father."