Maya Moore spent years fighting to free Jonathan Irons from prison, and he finally was in July.
But their story together was only just beginning.
Moore and Irons have since been married, the WNBA star announced Wednesday morning.
“We wanted to announce today that we are super excited to continue the work that we are doing together, but doing it as a married couple,” Moore said on “Good Morning America.”
“We got married a couple months ago and we’re excited to just continue this new chapter of life together.”
Moore had sat out the last two seasons to focus on criminal justice reform and specifically Irons’ case. The 40-year-old Missouri native had been sentenced to 50 years in prison in 1998 after being convicted of burglary and assault charges. Moore, 31, met him when she was 18 through a prison ministry program and later began to fight for his innocence and that he was wrongfully convicted.
“Over the last 13 years we have just developed a friendship and just entered into this huge battle to get him home and just over time it was pretty clear what the Lord was doing in our hearts and now we’re sitting here today, starting a whole new chapter together,” Moore said.
Irons was still in Jefferson City Correctional Center when he said he wanted to marry Moore, but told her not to answer then. After he was finally released in July, he didn’t wait long to ask the question and finally hear Moore’s answer.
“When I got out we were in the hotel room we had some friends in the room, it was winding down and we were extremely tired, but we were still gassed up on excitement,” Irons said. “It was just me and her in the room and I got down on my knees and I looked up at her and she kind of knew what was going on and I said, ‘will you marry me,’ she said, ‘yes.’”
Irons had been serving a 50-year prison sentence stemming from the non-fatal shooting of a homeowner in the St. Louis area when Irons was 16. But a judge threw out his convictions in March, citing a series of problems with the case, including a fingerprint report that had not been turned over to Irons’ defense team, according to The New York Times.
As for a potential return to basketball, Moore said she didn’t have any set plans yet.
“I’m hoping sometime in the spring we’ll be able to have a next step moving forward, but right now I am trying to really just breathe from this long, long battle and enjoy and rest,” she said. “There’s a lot of unknowns for a lot of us right now so I’m still in that camp.”