A TERMINALLY-ill father from South Tyneside who wants to marry his childhood sweetheart is close to having his wish granted.
Steven Booth was told he had cancer of the liver, chest, lungs and lymph nodes last month.
The shock diagnosis made the 39-year-old determined to tie the knot with his partner of 22 years, Lisa Holmes.
During the last few weeks, family and friends have rallied round the couple, from Simonside, South Shields, and scores of kindhearted businesses, strangers and Gazette readers have offered to help out.
Nearly everything is sorted for their big day at Little Haven Hotel in South Shields, on Saturday, March 16, except their wedding rings.
Lisa, 37, said: “It’s been unbelievable the number of people who have offered to help us. We’re so grateful. The pizza delivery man even chipped in after he heard about our story and recognised us.
“We’ve just about got everything sorted despite it all happening so quickly. The only thing we now need is the wedding rings, so we’re keeping our fingers crossed we will be able to get some in time.”
Steven is now in South Tyneside District Hospital.
He was due to have chemotherapy treatment to help control the spread of the disease on Monday, but it may not go ahead after doctors found a problem with his liver.
Lisa said: “They couldn’t start the chemotherapy due to a blockage issue with a stent in his liver, which is causing him to turn yellow. After they did some blood tests, he had to stay in. We’re waiting for scan results, and that will show whether or not they can try again with the chemo.”
Lisa needs a size L ring, while Steve needs a size S. Anyone who can help, should contact the Gazette on 427 4861.
* A charity flyer will be held at Mecca Bingo in Dean Road, South Shields, tonight, from 6.15pm, to help the couple.
Organised by Sharon Longstaff, of Biddick Hall, the event will see players donating cash before being in with a chance of winning a VIP night away for two. Everyone is welcome to attend.