When Beth and Bill met, they were both in relationships with other people. Beth was working as a registered nurse at a corrections facility and Bill was a supervisor there working with the medical staff.
Soon, the connection between them became undeniable. For a while, they tried to avoid each other and pretend their feelings did not exist, but soon that became impossible. They knew their love was meant to be.
They faced challenges as they began their lives together, but their love grew stronger and stronger every day.
“Everything was perfect and our love grew more and more,” Bill said, “then our next hurdle arrived.”
In September of 2014, Beth was diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer. Bill stayed by her side during chemotherapy appointments and took care of her when the subsequent sickness and exhaustion hit.
After undergoing a double masectomy, it was finally time for Beth to go home. Bill gave her her medication and milked her drains. Doctors said Beth would live another 20 years!
But soon after, some issues arose and Beth was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer on her sternum. This time it was terminal.
“This time there was no surgery,” Bill said. “They pretty much gave her medication and hoped it helped.”
The couple tried to move on and enjoy their life together while they could. Then, about a year later, Beth went back to the doctor with a pain in her hip.
The prognosis was heartbreaking: the cancer had spread to her hip, pelvis, and spine.
Beth struggled with feelings of guilt that Bill had to take care of her.
“She always told me to leave, that I didn’t sign up for this. That I was still young and can enjoy my life,” Bill said. “I told her she was my life, and I am not going anywhere. She tried to be mean to me so I would leave her. It never worked though.
“She used to tell me she was my ‘lemon girlfriend,’ and apologized for messing our life up. I would tell her God put us together for a reason, and I’m here to take care of her.”
In December of 2018, the cancer spread again. This time, it was in her brain.
Through tears, Bill relayed the devastating news to Beth. Doctors told them there wasn’t anything they could do to prolong her life, so Beth decided to refuse treatment and just enjoy the time she had left.
With Christmas approaching, Bill was determined to give Beth the one thing she wanted most: a ring.
“I ran to the local jewelry store for a ring,” he said. “I wanted to give her everything she wanted, but most of all, she wanted to be Mrs. Beth Brewer.”
He filed for a marriage license, but ran into complications since Beth wasn’t with him.
After a last trip together to Las Vegas, Bill decided to try again. This time, the license came through.
Beth’s health had significantly declined and she was put on hospice.
When Bill came home from picking up the marriage license, he told Beth two things:
“1. ‘You can’t leave me unless I’m home with you.’ And 2. ‘You can’t leave me until we are married.’”
Bill called a member of their motorcycle club to get a chaplain who could marry them right away.
“When I spoke to the chaplain, he advised me his schedule was open until the 16th,” Bill said. “My response was, ‘I was thinking tonight at 7:30.’”
The chaplain said he could be there and Bill quickly called Beth’s family and their best friends and told them to come over immediately.
“February 6th at 7:30 p.m. we got married in our family room,” Bill shared. “As Beth smiled and a gave thumbs up from her hospital bed, everyone was overjoyed to see her so happy and glowing. I had finally married the woman of my dreams, after her 4-year fight.
“It was so amazing to see everyone smiling and there in support,” he continued. “I know she wanted all of us happy. She always worried about others before herself. After our wedding ceremony, I looked at her and said, ‘Babe we finally did it!’ Her joyful smile was the ribbon on this beautiful gift.”
The next morning, Bill, along with Beth’s mother and niece, cared for her. By 2 p.m., it was just Bill and Beth. Finally, she knew it was time to go.
“She waited for us to be married and I was by her side,” Bill said. “As her husband and best friend, I did not want her to go. But I also knew it was time and did not want her to suffer anymore.”
On February 7th, 2019, at 2:10 p.m., Beth took her last breath and quietly passed away, just 19 hours after marrying Bill.
“My world stopped,” he said.
Bill is heartbroken that Beth is gone, but he’s glad he was able to call her his bride before she passed. She may no longer be on this earth, but the love they shared is eternal.
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