Woman fights to fulfil Oakey mother’s dying wish
SUFFERING from terminal cancer, an Oakey mother has made one final wish - to get married to her partner while surrounded by family and friends.
Laurel Anderson always dreamt of her wedding day, and after battling cancer in 2017, thought she had time to plan. Unfortunately this week she was readmitted to hospital with aggressive stomach and bowel cancer that has left her bedridden.
Her daughter Ashton Harry is now in a battle against time to organise her mum's first wedding.
"She has always wanted to get married. To see her in this way, it's heartbreaking, I can see she is still fighting right now and I know what she fighting for," Ms Harry said.
"She told me that after she gets married, she knows it will be time to go."
Ms Harry said they would hold the bedside ceremony at Oakey Hospital tomorrow afternoon, during which Ms Anderson would marry her longtime partner Garry Burke.
"They had been talking about it but work had got in the way," Ms Harry said.
"They only found each other nine years ago, they thought they would get to spend the rest of their lives together - and now this.
"I can't explain how (Garry) is feeling. He's been by her side day and night - he's trying to make her last moments comfortable."
Ms Anderson's family is now travelling from up north for the event, but there is still plenty to be done. Caught off guard by the sudden diagnosis, Ms Harry has appealed to the community for help.
"We're waiting on paperwork which we need to give to the celebrant," Ms Harry said.
"She loves flowers and I would love it if we could brighten up the room, and add some fairy lights and decorations, as she won't be able to move outside. Her favourite colour is purple.
"My stepdad doesn't have a suit yet either, and if anyone has any wedding suggestions, we would love to hear them."
With time of the essence, Ms Harry has posted her appeal to a couple of Toowoomba Facebook groups. She said the response had heartened her.
"It's been overwhelming. I always asked my mum why she moved, and now, after all this, I understand. These are good people," she said.
All donations for Ms Anderson's wedding can be dropped at the reception of the Oakey Hospital. Suggestions and wedding ideas can be texted to 0475 145 540.