INDIANAPOLIS – A new show streaming on Netflix features two couples from central Indiana.
Say I Do documents eight couples, their history and relationship. At the end of each episode, a person proposes to their significant other and they get married within days.
Jonathan and Jason VanHorn are featured in episode six. The couple met online and has experienced it all together. Even though they did get engaged, their wedding was delayed when Jason was diagnosed with cancer in 2015.
“The worst day of my life, for sure, was the day Jason was diagnosed with cancer,” Jonathan said during the episode. “You hear stage four and you think that’s terminal death, that’s it.”
Jonathan and Jason weren’t able to do an interview with CBS4 in time for our broadcast, partly because Jason works in healthcare. Yet, they agreed the experience with the Netflix show was amazing.
In episode six, viewers saw them get re-engaged at Lucas Oil Stadium. Because Jonathan loves Christmas, they had a winter wonderland themed wedding.
“Life has forced you to grow through great adversity,” the officiant said during the wedding. “You had to be at the mercy of the care of your love and of the care of your community. And in that moment, Jonathan, you showed up. You showed up big time and you got to be there with your love.”
Toward the end, the couple also got to meet with a lawyer to discuss adoption.
Another Indianapolis couple basking in the magical moment is Randy and Skyler Caplinger.
“I had seen it on a Facebook advertisement, which seems so sketchy,” Skyler Caplinger told CBS4. “You never click on those things!
Caplinger signed up for the show on a whim. He and his partner, Randy, were interviewed several times and finally approved for the show.
“There was no script,” Randy insisted. “It was all a surprise, everything.”
The couple appears in the emotional season finale. In their episode, viewers learn about the challenges the couple has faced in years past.
“Randy is really struggling with being a gay man,” Skyler said during the show. “We’re not even really a couple that displays our love in public. We don’t kiss in public. We’re just so scared of what people are going to say and what they’re going to think and the judgment.”
Randy described his family, saying certain members don’t agree.
His outlook changed once the show aired.
“For me, as a gay person, who was not fully in the gay community and did not have friends who were gay, and then to be, in a sense, immersed with love from this group of people, especially at the Hi-Fi event was extremely overwhelming and exciting,” Randy said.
Randy and Skyler were already engaged but never got married. The couple said it was in part because they were concerned about who would and wouldn’t show up to the ceremony.
Years ago, Randy proposed to Skyler. Now, Skyler felt like it was his turn to surprise Randy and get down on one knee. He did so at a nearby theater in front of the Indianapolis Men’s Choir. Later, the production crew surprised Randy with an event at Hi-Fi Indy in Fountain Square. There, Indy Pride surrounded him with support.
“Growing up, for me, I was always trying to find my place. I was always trying to fit in with a group of people that I internally knew I wasn’t fitting in with and for years I have just been trying to find my place. And in that moment, at the Hi-Fi event with Indy Pride, I finally felt like I had my place somewhere and it was awesome.”
Since seeing episode eight, viewers from around the world have reached out to the Caplingers.
“We’re getting messages from people from Japan, Canada, South Africa, Italy and Brazil,” Randy said. “Like, your story resonates with me. It’s been very intense but very inspiring.”
Randy said he has cried seeing some of the messages because so many people are experiencing what he did as well. He is making an effort to respond to each person who contacts him.
“I never thought I could be a person who would impact people and I feel like that’s really touching to me,” he said.
The couple said they have also received messages from people who felt changed after watching their love story.
“You’re not just gay. You have a love story and you have feelings and seeing you and Skyler interact with each other, I can see the love is genuine and real,” Randy told CBS4. “This is what I needed to see because I did not ever think two gay people could feel this way for each other.”
The Caplingers are considering public speaking and mentioned wanting to start a family.
“This has been a story that has been needed to be told, especially on a big platform like Netflix,” they said. “With this episode, I hope we all take a moment to understand the message and what people feel.”