2015年4月28日星期二

Heartbreak as father-of-three who married his sweetheart days after being diagnosed with terminal cancer dies in her arms aged 43

  • Chris Clark was diagnosed with incurable stomach cancer in 2012
  • He proposed to girlfriend Charlotte and 10 days later the couple married
  • Father-of-three underwent more than 60 gruelling rounds of chemotherapy
  • He died in his wife's arms after battling the disease for almost three years 

A father who married his girlfriend 10 days after being diagnosed with terminal cancer has died after a two-year battle with the disease.

Despite being given just months to live, Chris Clark defied his doctors' expectations, and withstood more than 60 gruelling rounds of chemotherapy.

The freelance photographer and father-of-three was told he was suffering stomach cancer in October 2012.

He proposed to his girlfriend Charlotte Barnes moments later and the couple rushed to organise their dream wedding.

Ten days later they walked down the aisle to become man and wife.

But two-and-a-half years later, his wife is now having to come to terms with life without her soul mate.

Chris Clark proposed to his girlfriend Charlotte Barnes moments after being diagnosed with terminal stomach cancer in 2012, and they married 10 days later. Chris died in Charlotte's arms on April 8

Chris Clark proposed to his girlfriend Charlotte Barnes moments after being diagnosed with terminal stomach cancer in 2012, and they married 10 days later. Chris died in Charlotte's arms on April 8

The father-of-three defied doctors' expectations living for almost three years after his diagnosis, despite being given just months to live in September 2012

The father-of-three defied doctors' expectations living for almost three years after his diagnosis, despite being given just months to live in September 2012

Mr Clark underwent more than 60 gruelling rounds of chemotherapy in the last two-and-a-half years to try and prolong the time he had left with his loved ones

Mr Clark underwent more than 60 gruelling rounds of chemotherapy in the last two-and-a-half years to try and prolong the time he had left with his loved ones

He passed away in her arms on April 8, at the age of 43.

'Chris was not only my husband, but he was my best friend and soul mate,' said Mrs Clark, 32.

'I can't begin to put into words how grateful I am for everyone's beautiful comments and condolences so far.

'What has astounded me is how, from words and photos over the last few years, people have really been able to understand the love Chris and I shared. 

'I am humbled beyond belief by people having taken stock of their own lives and relationships with loved ones and used our story as inspiration, not only to stop worrying about the little things but start living in the moment.'  

After receiving the devastating news at Warwick Hospital, Chris popped the question to Charlotte and the pair planned their dream wedding from his hospital bed. 

Chris was not only my husband, but my best friend and soul mate 

Charlotte Clark 

It took place ten days later near their home in Offchurch.

The happy couple were surrounded by 300 family and friends including Chris's children Connor, 22, Logan, 19 and Sennen, 17 from a previous marriage.

'It was the most amazing and magical day,' said Mrs Clark.

'When I look back at photos we both look so happy.

'It was clear cancer took a back seat that day. I'm so lucky I got to meet and marry a man as amazing as Chris. I thank God for every day he gave me with him.' 

The social worker has now signed up to take part in Race for Life in Chris's honour to raise funds for Cancer Research UK.

In 2013 the couples had the honour of starting Coventry city centre's Race for Life before Mrs Clark joined in and raised nearly £3,000 for vital research.

He leaves behind his wife, Charlotte, 32, centre, and his three children from a previous marriage, daughter Sennen, 17 and her brothers Connor, 22, and Logan, 19

He leaves behind his wife, Charlotte, 32, centre, and his three children from a previous marriage, daughter Sennen, 17 and her brothers Connor, 22, and Logan, 19

Charlotte, said: 'Chris was not only my husband, but he was my best friend and soul mate. I can't begin to put into words how grateful I am for everyone's beautiful comments and condolences so far'

Charlotte, said: 'Chris was not only my husband, but he was my best friend and soul mate. I can't begin to put into words how grateful I am for everyone's beautiful comments and condolences so far'

She added: 'Chris was a fighter to the last... He didn't lose his fight, he kicked cancer's butt for more than two years and I intend to carry on that fight in his honour'

She added: 'Chris was a fighter to the last... He didn't lose his fight, he kicked cancer's butt for more than two years and I intend to carry on that fight in his honour'

Shortly afterwards, the couple won Cosmopolitan magazine's Ultimate Love Story award which resulted in them being invited to 10 Downing Street to meet the PM's wife Samantha Cameron. 

'Chris was a fighter to the last and I'm extremely proud to be doing Race for Life in his memory,' said Mrs Clark, who now lives in Long Itchington.

You inspired so many, including myself, to push themselves, never give in and stay positive. Everyday I will strive to make you proud my hero, best friend and teacher

Chris's daughter, Sennen pays tribute to her father 

'He didn't lose his fight, he kicked cancer's butt for more than two years and I intend to carry on that fight in his honour.'

She also asked for no black to be worn at the funeral, which took place this afternoon at Holy Trinity Church in Long Itchington.

More than 300 brightly-clad mourners were expected to walk behind the hearse from the village green to the church as a special tribute to the much-loved former Navy man.

Adding to the floods of tributes on Facebook, Chris's daughter Sennen said: 'You inspired so many including myself to push themselves, never give in and stay positive.

'Everyday I will strive to make you proud my hero, best friend and teacher.

'I know you're still here with me. Love you always.'

Paula Young, spokeswoman for Cancer Research UK, said: 'I had the great honour of meeting Chris when Charlotte first entered Race for Life in 2013 and was struck by what a loving, devoted family man he was. 

'For Charlotte to think of how she can help others at a time like this shows what a truly remarkable couple they were.'

More than 300 mourners were expected at Chris's funeral today, with Charlotte asking that everyone attend to pay their respects wearing bright colours

More than 300 mourners were expected at Chris's funeral today, with Charlotte asking that everyone attend to pay their respects wearing bright colours

Paying tribute to her father, daughter Sennen wrote on Facebook: 'You inspired so many including myself to push themselves, never give in and stay positive. Everyday I will strive to make you proud my hero, best friend and teacher'

Paying tribute to her father, daughter Sennen wrote on Facebook: 'You inspired so many including myself to push themselves, never give in and stay positive. Everyday I will strive to make you proud my hero, best friend and teacher'

 

 

   

 



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