Nineteen-year-old Lou Ann Hawkins is on her way to Ogden, Utah, to meet her groom. But just as she prepares to get off the train to begin her new life, a man stops her. “Don’t go out there,” he warns her. “There’s a gun battle going on.” Trapped in the doorway of the train car, Lou Ann witnesses the horror of seeing a man gunned down in the middle of the street. But her horror grows when the townspeople and the passengers getting off the train flock around the killer, raise him onto their shoulders, and parade him through the town as a hero. When Lou Ann tries to report the murder to the sheriff, she gets another shock. The sheriff doesn’t care about the dead man and also proclaims the young killer a hero. He tells her the dead man was a notorious outlaw who terrorized the town for forty years. The people of the area have been praying for someone to kill him and deliver them from his predations.
Lou Ann begins to understand, but her world turns upside down once again when she arrives at the altar to marry her groom, only to discover that the man she has arranged to marry is the young gun fighter from the day before. At every turn, Lou Ann’s hopes and dreams for a new life out West fall apart, until she is forced to make the ultimate choice to claim her destiny.