Special ring blessing held on hospital ward for mother with cancer who will miss daughter's wedding

A mother receiving end of life care in hospital was able to be a VIP guest at her daughter's special early wedding ceremony – held on the ward just for her.

From left, Ian Cheal, Lorraine Cheal, Jacob McCausland, and bride-to-be Melissa Cheal
From left, Ian Cheal, Lorraine Cheal, Jacob McCausland, and bride-to-be Melissa Cheal

Lorraine Cheal has lung and brain cancer and is receiving palliative care at Walsall Manor Hospital.

Her daughter Melissa, age 27, is marrying her partner Jacob McCausland in December this year but knows her mum will not be able to make her big day.

So with the help of the hospital's care team and ward staff, the couple from Cannock visited Lorraine's bedside on Saturday with hospital Chaplain Anthony Swaby to perform a special ring blessing ceremony.

The bride had her wedding dress on and the groom was kitted out in his suit for the big day, while Lorraine and husband Ian also put on smart clothes.

Special needs teacher Melissa said it was an "unforgettable" day. She said her mother had never smoked or drank and had led a healthy lifestyle.

She said: "It meant such a lot to us because mum has been planning the wedding with me and was there when I chose my dress.

"It was important for us to make this memory with her and when we have our wedding in December we will make sure the video that my godmother took of today's ceremony plays a part.

"Mum smiled all the way through which was lovely as she wasn’t so well yesterday. We feel blessed to have this opportunity and to be able to share something so special."

Groom Jacob, 26, a civil servant, added: "Melissa wore her wedding dress and the room had been decorated by staff; it seems a bit surreal as everything has happened so quickly. But it means so much to us both that this could be arranged."

Ward 7 Sister Laura Trow added: "Melissa looked absolutely beautiful, stunning. We send her and Lorraine all our love."

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