‘They just don’t wait for everything to be perfect to be happy’: cancer patient with months to live marries high school sweetheart

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – That’s the kind of love story they make movies about. A cancer patient from Idaho, who doctors have told she has less than four months to live, married her high school sweetheart in Memphis on Thursday.

Gracie and Seth Madsen got married at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Kirby Whitten and hosted a sunset reception with their family and friends at the Landing over the Mississippi River.

“It was wonderful, it was a dream come true for both of us,” said Gracie’s mother Tiffany Jeppsen.

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Gracie, 20, was diagnosed with a brain tumor in early March and came to St. Jude a few weeks later to participate in a clinical trial.

Her parents have said Gracie and Seth dated in high school, had been separated for about three years while doing separate church service missions outside the country, and in January we are talking about marriage.

“She came home on March 29, was first diagnosed and they’ve been pretty much together ever since,” Jeppsen said. “They are an incredible couple.”

Gracie’s parents said it had been a lot of fun helping the couple make their dreams come true.

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“It was wonderful, and it’s wonderful today,” said Tiffany Jeppsen. “They just don’t wait for everything to be perfect to be happy. So, this is the plan.

Gracie and Seth were going to have a low-key ceremony, but her parents said her social worker in St. Jude stepped in and took over as the wedding planner.

Cheryl Ferguson said it has become a community project. The Chris Hope Foundation, Spreading the Sunshine, Methodist Le Bonheur Healthcare’s Share the Care, and Cake Art all helped with the wedding details.

“She’s trying to do her best to have the best quality of life possible, and that includes getting married to the man of her dreams, so we wanted to help her with that desire,” Ferguson said.

Gracie’s parents said their daughter would continue her treatment in St. Jude.

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