Terminally ill man gets chance to marry love of life

A TERMINALLY ill Toowoomba man has had the chance to marry the love of his life, thanks to the generosity of strangers.

Instead of focussing on his terminal gastro intestinal cancer, Rene Derksen chose to celebrate life when he married Meagan Horne last Friday.

National charity My Wedding Wish were touched by Rene and Meagan's story, and together with the generosity of Toowoomba wedding suppliers, made their dream wedding happen.

Mr Derksen said he could not believe they got the chance to share their special day with friends and family.

PERFECT DAY: Toowoomba couple Meagan Horne and Rene Derksen were gifted a perfect wedding at Reflections - Lake Cooby.
PERFECT DAY: Toowoomba couple Meagan Horne and Rene Derksen were gifted a perfect wedding at Reflections - Lake Cooby. Bev Lacey

"We are very grateful for the generous donations from the various businesses involved with My Wedding Wish," he said.

"Apart from the cost associated with planning a wedding, we have very little time in the day or the energy to be able to plan a wedding. So this is really an incredible gesture."

Rene and Meagan were married at 5pm at Reflections - Lake Cooby in front of 60 of their closet family and friends with a reception under fairy lights.

This is the first Toowoomba wedding held by My Wedding Wish, which is based on the Sunshine Coast.

EXCHANGING VOWS: Toowoomba couple Meagan Horne and Rene Derksen were gifted a perfect wedding at Reflections - Lake Cooby . My Wedding Wish gift weddings to couples affected by terminal illness. January 13, 2017
EXCHANGING VOWS: Toowoomba couple Meagan Horne and Rene Derksen were gifted a perfect wedding at Reflections - Lake Cooby . My Wedding Wish gift weddings to couples affected by terminal illness. January 13, 2017 Bev Lacey

The charity gifts couples a wedding when one of them or an immediate family member is diagnosed as terminally or life-threateningly illness.

My Wedding Wish CEO Dr Lynette Maguire said gifting the couple a wedding allowed them to step back from the stress and worry they were facing and instead enjoy their time together.

"And just for one day, Rene will have the joy of marrying Meagan, and surrounded by his close family and friends, he'll be able to focus on the absolute love in his life, not his cancer and diagnosis," she said.

Toowoomba couple Meagan Horne and Rene Derksen, surrounded by family sign the register. The couple were gifted a perfect wedding at Reflections - Lake Cooby . My Wedding Wish gift weddings to couples affected by terminal illness. January 13, 2017
Toowoomba couple Meagan Horne and Rene Derksen, surrounded by family sign the register. The couple were gifted a perfect wedding at Reflections - Lake Cooby . My Wedding Wish gift weddings to couples affected by terminal illness. January 13, 2017 Bev Lacey

My Wedding Wish's Toowoomba project leader and local wedding planner Sharon Edwards said the events could be emotionally challenging.

"But it is wonderful to give something back because it is a true gift with no expectation of anything in return," Ms Edwards said.

"For a certain number of hours they can forget the situation they are in despite the negatives."

Ms Edwards thanked all the local businesses who donated their services to the wedding to make it special for both Rene and Meagan.

For more information on the charity go to myweddingwish.com.au.

WEDDING DONORS:

  • All Perfectly Planned -Special Event Design
  • Carolann Bridalwear (Greenbank)
  • Deans Wedding Flowers
  • Hot Classic Wedding Cars
  • Invitation Designs by Eliza (Berrinba)
  • Kat Cherry Photography
  • Kim Wilson Celebrant
  • Mayers Photography
  • Premier DJ's
  • Reflections Lake Cooby
  • Roving Studios Photobooth
  • Sterling Laser Designs (Hillcrest)
  • Sweet Love Designs (Mudgeeraba)
  • The Sauce Kitchen
  • Toowoomba Wedding Décor Hire and Event Hire
  • Wicked Nics

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