In spite of everything Daves Lachance considers himself lucky – he got to spend Christmas Day with the love of his life, Kelly Bédard.
“It’s been seven months since she’s been here,” he told Global News.
“Here” is the Royal Victoria Hospital.
On June 22, Kelly gave birth to a little girl, Rose, three months early. It was an induced birth, said Dave, because Kelly was diagnosed with a rare type of ovarian cancer.
Kelly has been in hospital since then.
“She has a 5 and 10 percent chance of survival. She’s sick, very sick,” he said fighting back tears, “and she sleeps practically all day.”
The couple has seven children in all. Rose is the only girl.
With all this happening, notary Liat Lev-Ary said, Bédard wanted to make Christmas Day special.
“It was her wish to marry the father of her kids and her partner, and she wished for a Christmas wedding,” Lev-Ary said.
Lev-Ary said she researched the possibilities for marriage through social media. Lev-Ary said she dropped everything to officiate.
In an email to Global News, a hospital spokesperson said despite COVID-19 restrictions, “the MUHC (McGill University Health Centre) care team that was in charge fully recognized the exceptional situation and wanted to help the patient fulfil her wish.”
“I showed up, I was escorted by not one but two security guards,” said Lev-Ary. “I felt like a VIP.”
A small party, including the couple’s mothers and a sister, gathered in a room on the 8th floor of C-pavilion of the Royal Vic.
“Her nurses came too,” the notary recalled, laughing. “They asked us if they could crash the wedding. They called themselves the wedding crashers.”
She said she kept the ceremony very short but that it was moving and emotional.
“We all cried,” she noted. “The mothers cried, the sister cried, I cried. The circumstances are not the best, but they have a beautiful love.”
For Lachance it was a dream come true, too.
“It was important for our kids, for me and my wife,” he said.
Lachance spends almost every single night here with her, sometimes sleeping in his car in the hospital parking lot, hoping for the best. Their seven kids are being looked after by family.
He doesn’t know how much time his wife has left. Still, he hopes their marriage was the start of a Christmas miracle.
Update (Jan. 4, 2022); We’re saddened to learn that Kelly has since passed away. We extend our condolences to Kelly’s family and friends.