Knowing you may not have much time left is often a motivator to finally start living the life you’d always dreamed of. And that was the way it was for Colleen Fairchild.
Ever since their days as high school sweethearts, Colleen would always manage to cross paths with David Henderson. Regardless of how long it had been since they’d run into each other, they always seemed to be able to pick up right where they’d left off. Many years passed, they married other people and started raising their own families. Without fail, the timing just never quite worked out.
Fast forward to the end of 2013. Just after Christmas and right before she was to ring in the New Year, Colleen was given the devastating diagnosis of Terminal Lung Cancer. Not sure where to turn or who to talk to, she was fortunate to find solace in her old friend, David. He would call her faithfully every week to check on her progress.
Their bond grew stronger until they could no longer deny the fact that they’d fallen head over heels back in love with one another. In fact, Colleen even says her favorite thing about David is, “Everything. He’s the most loving man I’ve ever known.”
Then there’s David. He didn’t even have to say how much he loves her. It was evident as his entire face lit up whenever he laid eyes on her. According to him, he only wishes he would have reignited his pursuit of her much sooner, so as to have more time together. “She is my bestie, my first true love, my partner-in-crime, and my refuge. She is an amazing mother and grandmother, and hands down the most beautiful and caring person ever.
It was a love story that needed to be told, and was one for the books. Fortunately, Colleen had her very own angel on Earth in her nurse, Nancy Lynn. Inspired to go the extra mile, Nancy put out a plea out on social media. A perfect stranger by the name of Melissa Blayton ended up seeing that plea and stepped up in a big way. Owner of Melissa Blayton Pro Artistry, she is intimately familiar with the wedding industry. When Melissa heard Colleen’s biggest wish was to marry her soulmate before her time here on Earth is up, she knew it was something she could make happen.
“I am so blessed to work with some amazing wedding professionals and it was about time we get to play Fairy Godmother and make wishes come true,” says Blayton. In fact, she had an entire team of professionals ready to pay-it-forward in under 12 hours. “That’s just how amazing my friends are.” Melissa comments.
Angela and Alan Berry immediately jumped on board, offering up their one-of-a-kind incredible venue, Berry Acres, with a dance floor that simply must be seen to believe. So, the scene was set. And in a matter of hours, the remaining Angels were all lined up, offering to bless the couple with their fine-tuned skills in everything from invitation design, to floral creation, and gorgeous photography. The full list of Angels who came together on Colleen and David’s behalf can be found on the next page.
When February 28th, 2016 finally arrived, it was nothing short of spectacular. The day was unusually warm, as the sun sparkled over Berry Acres, and delighted all the guests in attendance. Love was in the air as the couple’s nearest and dearest packed the ceremony seats.
The day is one the couple will never forget. After all these seasons, and for so many reasons, love brought these birds back together again. And just when they thought all the excitement was over, they learned their story had even crossed state lines all the way to Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Touched by their story, Patsy & Terry Miller, owners of Treehouse Cottages, found the perfect honeymoon hideaway among the trees for the happy couple to celebrate their next chapter!
Ever so thankful for all the amazing things all these people did in their honor, they are busy savoring every second and really living in the moment. Although she’s fighting such a burdensome battle, Colleen chooses not to think of it in that way and insists that she’s pretty darn lucky. As she puts it, “I have an advantage over most people. I know that every day could be my last, so I choose to cherish every second I can.”
Thank you to all the people who made this possible. To Colleen and David, we wish you nothing but bliss!
The Angels that Made it Happen
VENUE & FOOD: Berry Acres PHOTOGRAPHY: Elizabeth Ladean Photography
HAIR & MAKEUP: Melissa Blayton Pro Artistry FLOWERS: Dixson Design
INVITATIONS: Two Turtles Paperie CAKE: Aunt Mary’s Cookies
VIDEOGRAPHY: Beau Vaughn Photography FRAMES: Angie Judy OFFICIANT: Dave Hackett
HONEYMOON: Treehouse Cottages (Eureka Springs, AR)