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Friday, April 27, 2012

AdilanClub: Bethany Smith: ‘I have a lot of good memories’

Sulaiman Kamal | 1:15 AM | | Best Blogger Tips

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Fighter: Bethany said she feels lucky to have loved Ryan and to
 have had a month of marriage with him
AdilanClub:Breaking news, is the best for news

Best friends since they met at university, Bethany Schmidt and Ryan Smith had always planned to get married - but agreed they would need at least two years to plan a wedding.

Yet when Ryan was diagnosed with a rare form of testicular cancer, they realised they did not have the luxury of that time - and instead planned their wedding in just three days.

>Link Info : General Issues - True Love

Together: The couple met at the University of Oregon in 2005
and immediately became close
But only six weeks after their vows, Ryan passed away, leaving Bethany a widow at just 24.

Now Bethany, who has turned 25, has spoken out about her struggle since the death, explaining how she has drawn strength from the fact she was lucky enough to have felt such strong love

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'I've been up and down,' she told the Today show, struggling to contain her tears. 'It's hard but I have an amazing support system and I have a lot of good memories too.'

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'Although it was way too short, we were able to be married and celebrate our one-month anniversary, and that’s a gift no one can ever take away,' she said in a separate interview.

But just months after throwing themselves into their futures, they received heartbreaking news: Ryan had a rare and aggressive form of testicular cancer and had developed a large tumour in his colon.

He also had a rare refractory disease meaning the cancer was unaffected by chemotherapy. Despite this devastating news at just 23 years old, Ryan remained strong.

'He never, ever complained,' Ryan’s mother, Carrie Smith, told Today. 'We have all just marvelled at this. He just never complained the entire time.'

Bethany took time off work - her colleagues giving their holiday time to her so she could keep her job - while Ryan underwent chemotherapy, surgery and long stays in hospital.

By November last year, doctors stopped his treatment and by December, his organs began shutting down, Today reported.

The previous July, seven months after his diagnosis, Ryan and Bethany went to visit their parents in Bend, Oregon.

During the drive, Ryan asked Bethany to pull over as he was feeling uncomfortable.

'All of a sudden he dropped down on one knee,' she told the Today show. 'I dropped to two.'

They went out for dinner at Ariana Restaurant to celebrate, unaware they would be marrying in the same bistro five months later after Ryan's prognosis worsened.

'I always told him I wanted to be engaged for two years because I wanted to be able to plan it for years,' Bethany told Today.

'But when he proposed and he was still dealing with all the health stuff, we pushed it back even further - we were still thinking 2013 - just until he was healthy.'

Yet in December, with Ryan's health worsening, the restaurant co-owner and chef, Ariana Fernandez, rushed to help prepare a wedding for the couple - in only three days.

'We set the date on a Thursday and we were married just three days later on Sunday,' Bethany said.

'She helped with everything. I kept thanking her and thanking her and she said to me: "You’ve had to hear no so much this year. I just wanted to be able to say yes to anything you wanted".'

Bethany and Ryan were married on December 11, surrounded by 32 guests who had flown from across the country - and from as far as England. 

Although Ryan felt too ill to stay for the dinner - reducing Bethany to tears over his pain - he returned later in the night to laugh and share stories with his friends.

Carrie Smith, Ryan's mother, told Today that the couple's friends 'said they hoped in their lifetimes to find a love like this'.

'Looking back on it, there was more love in that room than I have ever experienced in my life,' Bethany wrote after the wedding.

But just five weeks after their vows, Ryan was admitted to hospital. He died on January 24, with Bethany lying beside him.

'I blacked out two weeks of my life,' Bethany said. 'I don’t remember very much from that time.'

Now, three months since his death, she describes herself as 'up and down' and credits her family with helping her through.

When the story was originally covered by Today, thousands of readers wished her the best.

Of this attention, she said: 'It's a bit overwhelming, but in a positive way. It's good to know that it brings out the best in people.'



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