- (Photo: Reuters/Michael Brandy)
Elizabeth Smart married her fiancé at a Hawaii Mormon temple Saturday, according to reports.
Elizabeth Smart, who was kidnapped at 14 from her home in Utah for nine months by a deranged street preacher, moved up her plans to marry her fiancé Matthew Gilmour by a few months, deciding to have a more private ceremony, her uncle told Reuters.
After her engagement last month drew "increasingly invasive" inquiries by the media, according to her uncle Tom Smart, the 24-year-old decided to move up her nuptials to avoid attracting too much attention.
"Elizabeth's desire was for what most women want- to celebrate her nuptials in a private wedding with family and close friends," family spokesman Chris Thomas said in a statement.
Thomas also revealed that Smart's decision to take her wedding outside Utah was not initially planned.
"[Elizabeth] decided, about a week ago, the best way to avoid significant distraction was to change her wedding plans and to get married in an unscheduled ceremony outside of Utah," said Thomas.
Smart married 22-year-old Matthew Gilmour of Aberdeen, Scotland, in Oahu's Laie Hawaii Temple of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. She met Gilmour while taking the traditional 2-year Mormon missionary trip in Europe.
After the wedding, the guests, composed of close friends and family, moved to a private reception and luau.
"The bride and groom were beaming as they left the LDS Temple," said Thomas.
"We're just thrilled that she's married," Smart's father, Ed Smart, told The Salt Lake Tribune.
Once Smart returns from her honeymoon, she plans to continue her advocacy work with children. After her ordeal, she dedicated her life to helping children from abuse by forming the Elizabeth Smart Foundation.
Smart was kidnapped by crazed, homeless street preacher Brian Mitchell for nine months. During her captivity, she was forced into a polygamous marriage, raped, forced to consume drugs and alcohol, and threatened at knifepoint. For the former kidnapping victim, her healing comes by helping others.
"I think one of the biggest ways to overcome any trial in life, to heal from any kind of experience, is by helping those around you," Smart told reporters outside a courthouse at Mitchell's sentencing last year. "Because by lifting those around you up, you end up lifting yourself up as well."