Vivian Fittall with daughter Sophie.
A 20-year-old mother with incurable cancer will be
granted one of her dying wishes tomorrow when she celebrates an
Vivian Fittall will leave intensive hospital care for the day
to celebrate her marriage to partner Jack Waller at Red
Beach, on the Hibiscus Coast, north of Auckland - thanks to
the generosity of family, friends and the local community.
Last month Ms Fittall discovered a hereditary condition she
carried had degenerated into aggressive liver, rectal, lung
and possibly lymph node cancer. She may have only a short
time left to live.
In a post on a fundraising page for her "bucket list", Ms
Fittall said: "This week my man Jack proposed to me ... and I
want to marry him."
With "humbling" generosity from family, friends and the
community, the young couple have rushed to tie the knot.
"Only a month ago she was diagnosed with terminal cancer ...
and it has spread all through her body," family friend Kelly
de Rooy said. "The prognosis is pretty grim.
"Her boyfriend proposed to her a few days ago and they've had
to make the wedding this Saturday because they don't have
time to wait."
Local support for Ms Fittall's cause had been amazing, Ms de
Support had also come from further afield, Ms Fittall's
father, Yahn Darkwood, said on Facebook this week.
"Things have escalated quite quickly ... the speed at which
this devastating disease has spread is mindblowing. We really
had no idea a month ago. Life has never been easy, but this
one has really floored me.
"My daughter Vivian is very very sick. However on the
positive side, her man Jack proposed to her last week and the
wedding is this Saturday.
"The Hibiscus Coast community and friends from all over
Auckland and New Zealand have really pulled together to help
us get a wedding together. There has also been some fabulous
people helping the family."
Almost everything for a magical wedding day had been provided
at short notice, so the family could focus their energy and
money on medical and associated costs.
A wedding dress, a suit for the groom, wedding and reception
venues were among the many items donated for the couple's
wedding. A helicopter had also been offered.
The owner of Suits on Broadway in Newmarket, David Eggleton,
gave Mr Waller a suit, shirt and tie.
Although he didn't know the couple, he said, their story
"I just said to him, enjoy what you get in terms of time. But
it doesn't sound like they've got a lot."
A donation page set up for Ms Fittall's cause, and for the
couple's 11-month-old daughter, Sophie, was up to $21,000
The page features a note from Ms Fittall in which she says
her cancer is incurable.
"I love my little girl Sophie and wanted to see her grow up
but now that isn't likely," she says.
"My fundraising is for my 'bucket list' [for] Sophie's
future, including schooling, my medical and natural therapy
costs, a wedding and, if well enough, a honeymoon."
Other ventures had also been organised, including a garage
sale and online fundraisers.
Sir Peter Leitch donated a double pass to last weekend's
Rugby League Nines, which sold for $310.
Tomorrow's wedding would depend on his daughter's health on
the day, Mr Darkwood posted.
"Vivian was told by her doctors that any wedding needed to
happen soon, so they chose Saturday. Now we are all praying
that Vivian will stay well enough for the service ...
"But she's going to make a beautiful bride, and Jack will
make an awesome son."
To make a donation, go to http://www.givealittle.co.nz/cause/VivianandSophie.