Southam woman has dream wedding while battling cancer

Jade and Travis Currell arranged their wedding at St James in Southam within weeks of Jade being diagnosed with a serious illness.  'Photos courtesy of Zoe Kate Photography.
Jade and Travis Currell arranged their wedding at St James in Southam within weeks of Jade being diagnosed with a serious illness. 'Photos courtesy of Zoe Kate Photography.

No matter what happens in the future, a newly-wed will know her husband, family and friends will always have happy memories of a wedding day where she gained strength from the love and support of so many well-wishers.

Jade Currell had weeks of anxiety when she was told she had a tumour in December and the following month her worst fears were confirmed when she got the devastating news that she has pancreatic cancer.

The condition has one of the lowest survival rates, but that did not stop the determined 26-year-old embarking on a debilitating programme of chemotherapy.

Jade, who lives in Southam with her husband Travis, aged 24, said: “They have told me it’s not curable - the chemotherapy is to contain the cancer and prolong my life.

“They haven’t given me a time because they don’t know how the chemo might shrink the tumour. It was a shock and it’s been very hard for Travis and both families because it’s a hard cancer to treat.

“But there’s no point in being negative about the hand I’ve been dealt – you have to deal with it and get on with life.”

And that’s what the couple of eight years did.

With the help of family, friends and well-wishers in the Southam area, they quickly set about organising their wedding – managing to get it all sorted within weeks for the big day on February 20.

Wedding plans were sparked by a proposal by Travis just days after the diagnosis, said Jade. “It took me by complete surprise. Travis took me to New York for Christmas 2013 to a really nice hotel and I thought he’d do it then, but he didn’t.”

Jokingly she said: “There’s the old funny saying ‘Treat ’em mean, keep ’em keen’ and Travis certainly kept me keen for years – but in all seriousness, he’s been brilliant in our time together, especially now.”

Jade, who was working as a carer at Galanos House, Southam, before her diagnosis, said: “It was all a bit of a scramble but the day went without any hiccups and it was wonderful.

“We wanted to have the wedding before I got too poorly and the side effects from the chemo started. And no matter what the future holds, there will always be memories of our time together and from our wonderful wedding day. It was beautiful and all the love and support from family, friends and well-wishers gave me strength for the day. It was very emotional but I managed not to cry.”

Jade said she was astonished by the generosity of people helping with the arrangements and giving their services for free, including the bell ringers and organist at St James, Southam, flowers by Suzanne Evetts, of Market Hill, and Zoe Kate Photography of Harbury.

“I’ve been overwhelmed by the generosity and support from strangers. It restores your faith in human kindness.”

While Travis, a former South-am College pupil, has had help from his work mates at Cummins in Daventry, where he is a maintenance engineer, to pay some of the costs of a mini-honeymoon in London.

Jade has to undergo chemo every two weeks at Warwick Hospital, as well as wear a chemo pack at home for 36 hours, and will visit University Hospital, London, for more opinion on her condition and the possibility of taking part in clinical trials of drugs to help keep the cancer in check.