The attack was so vicious she had permanent nerve damage to her face - which meant her smile would never be the same.
10 months after the attack, Cameron got back in touch and asked if she’d like to have dinner.
‘The more I learned about Cameron, the more I realised that we have so much in common,’ says Melissa. Sticking by her during surgeries, and court appearances while her attacker was sentenced to life in prison.
Cameron’s proposal went viral on the internet when he went down on one knee at a Tampa Bay Rays baseball game.
But final surgery had to happen before Melissa would marry her hero - she wanted to smile on her wedding day.
Muscles from Melissa’s thigh were transplanted to her face, and after a year of intensive healing and rehab she was ready for her big day - beaming smile and all!