A dying mother has proudly walked her daughter down the aisle shortly before passing away after her years-long battle with cancer.
The bittersweet wedding took place amid Jessie Quigley’s mother’s battle with a rare form of cancer of the plasma cells.
As 27-year-old Jessie explained, her mother, Leona, had been sick ever since 2016. Despite her condition, however, the proud mother was determined to do anything to stand by her daughter’s side on the day she got married.
“It meant everything to all of us that mum was there on the day. She was the most amazing person and both mine and Adam’s best friend,” Jessie said in an interview with Daily Mail Australia.
Allegedly, Leona was diagnosed with the deadly disease 10 months prior to Jessie and Adam’s engagement. At that time, however, “her health wasn’t that bad.”
“She was away with us on the holiday and knew all about the proposal before it happened, which was impressive as she could never keep a secret,” Jessie recalled.
After their engagement, the young couple wanted to wait one year before getting married. Nevertheless, they wanted to change their plans after Leona’s health began deteriorating rapidly.
“She was stubborn and downplayed how sick she was,” Jessie shared. “She wouldn’t let us bring it forward, however, and so we kept the original date.”
On the day of the wedding, November 4, 2017, Adam and Jessie celebrated their special day together with their entire family, including Leona who was spending her last day out of the hospital.
“She was that sick she had to be specially transported up to the wedding in the New South Wales Southern Highlands from Sydney and back on the same day,” Jessie recalled.
“She fell over there when she got there and so had bruises on her face and neck which my makeup artist covered up extremely well.
“But mum was a fighter and even though doctors told her she didn’t have long, she fought every single hurdle and continued fighting on the day.
“My brother-in-law, the NRL player Anthony Watmough, took mum down the aisle; by this stage she was using a walker. She later walked down the aisle to give me away with his assistance.”
Before the ceremony was over, Leona also managed to deliver a speech that she prepared for the young couple.
“I may not be there to hold your hand each day, but I’ll always be there in your heart,” she said according to Jessie who said she would “remember it forever.”
As Jessie explained, Leona “kept working until July even though she died in December.”
“She was that kind of a fighter,” the proud daughter added.
“We also had another holiday booked for the entire family on December 8. She passed away on December 4. You always think your mum will meet your baby and you don’t contemplate a future without that.
“But it was good to be able to say goodbye to her. Me, my aunt and other family members were all with her in the hospital for the final four days of her life. We got to spend time with her and say our farewells.”
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