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After two heart transplants, terminally ill Javier Rodriguez had one last wish: to marry his high school sweetheart and the mother of their infant daughter, before entering a hospice for his final days.
'I love you', the 23-year-old Rodriguez whispered into his bride's ear during a hastily put together ceremony that was packed with tearful family, friends and medical personnel at a hospital chapel in Chicago on Wednesday.
Newlyweds - Home - Day - Thanksgiving - Days
He was to be taken back to the newlyweds' home the next day, which was Thanksgiving, with just days to live because of his terminally-ill condition, attributed to a birth defect.
'He's at peace with that' said his bride Crystal Cuevas, 23, reports the Chicago Sun-Times.
Day - Life - Mom
But she confessed the happiest day of her life was still bittersweet, especially as a soon-to-be widowed mom.
'When I think of my daughter, that's when it breaks me down', the Sun-Times reports.
Rodriguez - Cardiomyopathy - Condition - People - Heart
Rodriguez was diagnosed with familial dilated cardiomyopathy, a genetic condition that predisposes young people to heart failure, reports the Chicago Tribune. He had heart transplants at age 14 and 18.
He has several days, possibly weeks left, says Bryan Smith, his current doctor, the Tribune reports. Smith added that Rodriguez earlier this week said he wanted his tombstone to read 'husband'.
Groom - Wedding - Cuevas - Pace - Ceremony
The groom had actually been late to his own wedding, making Cuevas pace back and forth nervously while she waited before the ceremony, the Sun-Times reports.
She joked that it's...
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