'Amazing' nurses help terminally ill man wed partner of 16 years

David and Sandra Collins finally tied the knot at Inverclyde Royal Hospital on May 5.

Terminally ill man weds partner of 16 years at Inverclyde Royal Hospital thanks to nursing staff Email
Just married: David and Sandra were delighted to finally be wed.

A terminally ill man has finally married his partner of 16 years in hospital thanks to the help of an “amazing” team of nurses. 

David and Sandra Collins married in a ceremony at Inverclyde Royal Hospital on May 5, with staff organising every last detail for the happy couple. 

David from Port Glasgow was admitted to the H South ward in March for extensive surgery and bowel cancer treatment. 

However the 55-year-old was soon told he would require palliative care, which spurred him on to propose to Sandra after 16 happy years together. 

With the help of staff, an area of the hospital was transformed into a wedding venue to give David and his bride a day to remember. 

The couple were bowled over by the efforts of hospital staff. Email
The couple were bowled over by the efforts of hospital staff.

David, a former painter and decorator, said: “The staff were absolutely brilliant, they made the day so special for us both. It didn’t matter that it was in a hospital, the way they made the place look was incredible. They went so above and beyond to make our day special for us.

“It was a very emotional day, when I was getting moved to the room I remember all the staff clapping me but I wasn’t too nervous. We went against tradition a bit though and I was the one who kept Sandra waiting as I was busy writing a card for her.

“Thankfully the staff managed to look after her until I was ready.  When I was waiting for Sandra to come through the doors I just remember thinking how excited I was to be marrying her and how much I was looking forward to it.

“The minister who married us was from the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital, he said he had never married a couple who were smiling so much and that was such a nice thing to say. It was just such a special day.”  

Staff transformed an area of the hospital into the perfect wedding venue. Email
Staff transformed an area of the hospital into the perfect wedding venue.

After hearing wedding bells, the staff quickly got involved to help the couple in any way they could, organising balloons, flowers, arranging the room and ensuring family and friends could be part of the ceremony.

Admin assistant Sandra, 49, said: “The staff were amazing, we cannot thank them enough. They couldn’t do enough to help us get everything sorted. They transformed the room and were just so happy that they could help us on our big day.

“The team have been great, not just with the wedding but with how they have been with David during his time at the IRH, they clearly care about him very much and we feel part of the close-knit family here.” 

Clare Hynes, senior charge nurse at IRH added: “All the staff have a great relationship with David and when he asked us how he would go about getting married we wanted to do everything we could to help.

“The staff did a great job in contacting different companies for flowers, balloons and transformed the room into a lovely setting for David and Sandra’s big day. David felt so comfortable knowing that the H South team were helping to organise it all.

“It was a very emotional day for all of us and we are glad we were able to give David and Sandra a memorable day.”