TRUE LOVE: Brad and Patricia Parker celebrated their special day with family, including Patricia's grandson Ollie, and best man Colin Horrocks at the Biggenden Multi Purpose Health Service on Thursday.
TRUE LOVE: Brad and Patricia Parker celebrated their special day with family, including Patricia's grandson Ollie, and best man Colin Horrocks at the Biggenden Multi Purpose Health Service on Thursday. Erica Murree

Dying man marries love of life on 60th birthday

"I AM a better person for having you in my life as you enhance all the best qualities in me."

These were the words expressed by Brad Parker as he married the love of his life and best friend Patricia Reid at the Biggenden Multi Purpose Health Service last Thursday morning.

Brad, who is dying from prostate cancer, captured the hearts of the whole Bundaberg region last week after reports he was going to marry Patricia on his 60th birthday.

The former Monto grazier was set to marry the love of his life in April, but the cancer has progressed rapidly.

 

Brad and Patricia Parker exchange rings at their wedding service on Thursday.
Brad and Patricia Parker exchange rings at their wedding service on Thursday. Erica Murree

The couple exchanged their own vows in front of family and friends and marriage celebrant Vicki Knight.

The ceremony held in dining room of the residents' section had been turned into a rural setting.

Pride of place was Brad's favourite saddle, boots and hat.

Patricia's bouquet was flowers from around their Happy Hill property at Dallarnil.

There were some laughs when Brad suggested there could have been parthenium flowers in it.

Brad said the day had been just so special. "Health-wise it's the best I've been for some time," he said. "It's been the happiest day of my life."

Patricia said it was a bit overwhelming what all the staff did.

Brad said he hoped the community got some enjoyment out of what was an unique event, the first wedding for the Biggenden health service.

Mates and bestmen Colin Horrocks, of Mt Perry, and Ross Hindmarsh, of Eidsvold, shared memories of their working life together.

Mr Horrocks said the decorations represented Brad's life.

Daughter Rebecca Smith, who gave her mum away, said it was a perfect day

"I am so happy to see Mum marry the man of her dreams. "Brad is such an amazing man," she said.

Rebecca and three-year-old son Ollie flew over from Perth for the occasion. The three year old had a special job as he was in charge of looking after the wedding rings.

"I kept them in my top pocket," he said. Enjoying the ceremony were Blue Care clients and health service residents who were all ready to throw rose petals and blow bubbles over the happy couple.

Blue Care client Margaret Westland said the ceremony was absolutely beautiful.

Erica Murree



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