After vowing not to do it without him present, the parents of a terminally ill five-year-old boy granted his final wish by getting married at his bedside in hospital.
Suffering from a congenital heart defect, five-year-old Corey Edwards, from Teignmouth, Devon, in the U.K., was being treated at the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children.
The boy’s parents, Jemma and Craig Edwards, decided to marry by his bedside when they were told Corey could die in hospital. Their son did die on Thursday evening, five days after his parents got married.
1. Jemma and Craig Edwards listen to their wedding vows during their marriage at Bristol Children’s Hospital.
2. Corey Edwards’ job was to hold the rings for his parents during the marriage ceremony.
Mr. Edwards said that it was “a day we will never forget”.
Corey, who had been diagnosed with a complex congenital heart defect when he was just seven months old, was being treated at the pediatric intensive care unit after being admitted in January.
His parents arranged Saturday’s wedding in 48 hours, after learning that their son did not have much left to live. Jemma and Craig had to get special permission from the Archbishop of Canterbury.
Craig Edwards said:
He’s [Corey] asked quite a few times why we are not married, so we thought we would make it a special day and cheer him up a bit.
3. The five-year-old was suffering from a terminal congenital heart defect and had often asked his parents why they were not married.
The parents said that they “rushed into town” to buy wedding clothes and “made do with their engagement rings”.
They were helped by hospital staff, with one nurse doing the bride’s hair while another making the wedding cake.
Craig Edwards said:
Instead of being at his bedside crying the whole time at least on that one day we had a real special day. We know he was happy that day.
4. Pictured front from left to right on the wedding day is Corey Edwards and his sisters Isabelle and Caitlyn. Across the back is their mother Jemma, Reverend Stephen Oram and their father Craig Edwards.
Hospital chaplain the Reverend Stephen Oram said:
It was fulfilling the wish of a dying child.
It was also emotional because we knew the outcome for poor Corey isn’t going to be a good outcome and everyone was just aware of the specialness of the day for Mr and Mrs Edwards and Corey.
5. Jemma and Craig Edwards sign their wedding register at the hospital bedside of their five-year-old son Corey.
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