Joe: “I have to travel nearly 5,000 miles to see my girlfriend.”

By Tom Brookes


Joseph Asher, 20, travels from his house in Handsworth, Sheffield to Waco, Texas just so he can spend time with his loved one.

“It’s like a 24 hour trip and it costs me about £600. But it’s all worth it”


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The pair away together in Spain


The Hallam University business student met Laney Horton, 26, at his local church in 2014, where she was helping out for six months as part of a charity she was working for.

After that, the part-time factory worker used every excuse he could to spend time with her, even joining her to paint the church walls nine till five for a whole week.

The pairs’ 15 month long relationship began when Laney invited Joe to a love-song-filled Jason Mraz concert.

The couple in Manchester before the concert

However, when she moved back to America things became tricky.

The longest they’ve spent apart from each other is three and a half months, which really pushed the boundaries of their relationship.

“When months go by, you start to question whether you’re actually together, because your practically living a single lifestyle.” Joe’s coping method is making sure they talk everyday.

When he visits her hometown in Waco, he describes it as something from a wild west movie. Lots of nothingness and blistering heat. So when Laney visits Sheffield, its the mundane things that she enjoys the most.

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Above: Lake Waco, Texas. Below: Manor Oaks Farm, Sheffield

“I only took her to Manor Farm, there was vegetable patches and stuff, and she thought everything was amazing,” he said.

But, even though they’ve spent half of their relationship in different continents, they’re still planning a future together once Joe finishes university.

“It’s a blessing and a curse long-distance relationships. It’s a lot of bad, but it makes it so much better when I finally see her.”

Joe and Laney




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