When Rick Ferrino was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer last year, he had just one goal he was determined to accomplish before he died: See his only daughter, Beth, get married.
Her wedding is scheduled for August of this year, but when the family got the news in June that Ferrino’s cancer had worsened and he might not make it that long, Beth and her fiance, Austin, decided to have a wedding ceremony at her dad’s bedside.
Making the celebration even more special, it happened on Father’s Day. The staff at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center in Buffalo, New York, where Ferrino was being treated, arranged for an outside ceremony in the hospital’s garden.
You can watch this touching video of the impromptu ceremony, which was put together as a surprise by Beth’s brother, Mitchell, and posted on Facebook:
Just three days after his daughter wed, Ferrino passed away at age 62.
The couple were so grateful for the chance to include him in such a big moment in their lives.
“This really gave us some peace of mind knowing that his fight had a reason, he wasn’t just fighting just to stay alive,” Beth’s now-husband, Austin Reese, told WGRZ. “He was fighting for his family, he was fighting to see his little girl finally get married.”
Beth echoed her husband’s sentiments and told the news station, “It was just very emotional … but I was happy to know he knew what was going on. And even after we went to his room, he said ‘Did they really just get married?'”
The couple will still hold their big wedding celebration in August as planned, and they will honor Ferrino’s life by releasing a lantern into the sky to symbolize his love of bonfires.
We’re so glad that Ferrino was able to share in his daughter’s joy.