TAMPA -- It’s every bride’s dream -- planning the wedding the of her dreams.
Aubrey Schmitt was 71 days away from walking down the aisle.
“We had the venue picked out, even our DJ,” says Schmitt. “It’s been stressful.”
Plans changed after Aubrey’s father, Thomas Schmitt, was admitted to Tampa General Hospital last week. Many years ago, he was diagnosed with hepatitis C after a blood transfusion, but was cured of the infection last year.
“Suddenly, he went in for something unrelated to his liver, but then it [liver] just started shutting down,” she says.
“He just keeps getting sicker and sicker,” says Schmitt. “Every time a doctor kept coming in and telling us things we didn’t want to hear, we decided we need to do it now.”
That’s when Audrey and her now husband, John Cruz, decided to get married by his side.
“Aubrey comes up to me and says one of the coolest things. ‘Wanna get married tomorrow,’” says Cruz,
Family from across the country came down to Tampa for the last-minute wedding.
The couple were able to get permission for staff at Tampa General to allow multiple people inside the ICU room.
“Yes, we all want the pretty dress and the beautiful hair with all the decorations but at the end of the day none of that matters,” she says.
Her father also wanted a tuxedo for the wedding, so Audrey took to Facebook to ask for a lender.
Within a few hours, William Morello with Fancy Frock Bridal and Formal Boutique had the tux delivered.
“So many strangers came together to help make our day special so I could hold my dad's hand as I married the love of my life,” she says. “Thank you to everyone.”
There is a GoFundMe set up for the Schmitt's medical bills. If you can help, here's the link.