A fairytale wedding dream came true recently for a very, very special northwest Illinois couple thanks to a very special organization.
Jon and Anne first met in 2008, not long after Anne underwent aggressive treatment for Stage 0 breast cancer.
“I was 32 at the time,” she says. “I did the mastectomy. I had radiation. I had the 5 years of tamoxifen. It was only Stage 0, half the doctors don’t even consider its cancer.”
Her cancer had been kicked when she met the then 36-year old single bachelor who had no intention of getting married or having kids. But Anne with her two boys was a game changer.
They met in September, moved in together near Rockford and were engaged by December.
Two years later with a doctors blessing they decided to expand the family.
Camden joined brothers Robbie and John. And for a while, all was well.
Then Anne felt something. She thought it was scar tissue and she went back in for a checkup.
“I go in and they say, ’We found 8 spots in your lungs.’ He’ssais it was 1 in a million chance for Stage 0 to spread to 4.”
The news rocked the family of five. Anne saw other doctors had more tests and confirmed her almost nonexistent cancer was back.
More surgery and more treatment were ahead.
And a wedding. Original plans were for a simple ceremony.
“ I have so much stress in my life already,” Anne says. “I don’t have the time to plan this. I don’t need the dress. I’m a jeans and t-shirt kind of girl.”
Enter wish upon a wedding, a nationwide nonprofit which makes fairy tale weddings come true. The group grant weddings to couples facing life altering circumstances and terminal illness.
Jon and Anne’s wedding is the organizations 100th wedding and includes everything the couple could need; The venue, food, drinks, entertainment, dress, accessories, music and makeup.
So on a recent and beautiful October Sunday at the Radisson Blu in downtown Chicago, Jon, Anne and all of their loved ones celebrated the eight beautiful years they’ve already had together.
The wedding went off without a hitch. Anne and Jon will probably wait until next year for a honeymoon, and while their future is a little unclear, they know they will tackle it together.
Wish Upon a Wedding Gala: 7th Annual Blissful Wishes Ball
Monday Nov. 7th 6pm
401 North Morgan Street, Chicago