Woman flies 7,000 miles to meet Tinder match – it ended well
“For all I knew, he was some 80-year-old man catfishing me. But I'm so glad I booked the flight."
By Katie Pearson via SWNS
A woman flew 7,000 miles to Hawaii to meet a stranger after matching with him on Tinder - they fell in love and have since welcomed their first child.
Brady Elliot, 25, was flying home to Hawaii after a trip to Ireland in July 2019, when he matched on the dating app Clodagh O’Sullivan, 22, who lived near the airport.
The pair started exchanging messages, spent hours FaceTiming each other and said they felt an instant connection.
After three months of chatting on the phone, Brady convinced Clodagh to fly to Hawaii in November 2019 to meet in person - where he was stationed as a Navy-Marine Medic.
The couple said it was love at first sight and Clodagh returned to the US to spend Christmas and New Year with his family in Florida.
They made things official during a trip to Jamaica and the US in October 2020 and Brady moved to Dingle, Ireland in December 2020.
The couple welcomed their son, Jamie Elliot, on 23rd July 2021, and are now happily living together in Ireland.
Clodagh, a bartender from Dingle, Ireland, said: “Never in a million years did I think I would fall in love and start a family after accepting that Tinder message.
“I nearly talked myself out of going to meet him.
“For all I knew, he was some 80-year-old man catfishing me.
“But I'm so glad I booked the flight and took the punt. As soon as we met, I knew he was the one.”
Their romance began because Brady was swiping through Tinder while in the airport waiting for his flight home from a vacation in Ireland.
Despite matching with one another, they didn’t have the chance to meet before Brady, a musician, flew back to Hawaii for work.
Clodagh, who lives near the airport, said: “Our apps must have been in proximity for about an hour when we matched.
“It’s really lucky we crossed paths.
"I couldn't really see his photos on Tinder so I wasn't that interested, but he then sent me a funny meme from the Office and it made me laugh.
“He was about to fly so we couldn’t meet in person, but he asked to add me on Instagram, and we started sending messages and speaking.
“To be honest, I didn’t expect anything to really come from it.”
But the pair started chatting daily and spent hours on FaceTime getting to know each other.
Clodagh even spoke to Brady’s friends and family, and she quickly fell head over heels for him.
A few months later, in November 2019, Brady plucked up the courage to invite her to visit him in Hawaii.
It would be the first time they had met face-to-face and despite being cautious, Clodagh booked a ticket and hopped on a plane.
She said: "Even though we had spoken on FaceTime, I was still very unsure.
"But I spoke to his friends and family which helped put me at ease.
"I was so nervous on the flight thinking: 'What am I doing here?'
"It's really not like me to do something so spontaneous.
"I did worry I wouldn't feel the same when we met in person, but I definitely felt a spark straight away."
Clodagh planned to spend seven days with Brady but ended up extending her trip by an extra week.
Despite COVID-19 scuppering some of their travel plans, the couple managed to visit each other back and forth over the next couple of years.
Clodagh said: "I never thought anything like this would ever happen.
"But things felt right with Brady, and I had to follow my heart."
Brady said: “We matched on the last day of my vacation, and I thought she was gorgeous.
“I was pretty obsessed with her from the get-go. Even though it seemed a bit silly to keep texting someone two oceans away.
“I asked the universe for a sign and then ‘Nancy Mulligan’ came on my Ed Sheeran, and I knew for sure it was meant to be.
“I kept asking her to visit me in Hawaii because I knew she was something insanely special.
“We kept talking for months and call nonstop and finally got her a ticket.
“Meeting her at the airport was the most nerve-racking day of my life.
“I knew Clodagh was the one right there in that airport and our first few weeks together felt like we had known each other through a thousand lifetimes.
“Living in Ireland is amazing - I never would have imagined living in a different country.
“But living here with her and our little baby boy is the most surreal thing I will ever experience, and I love every second of it.”
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