Friday, March 25, 2016

Cancer patient wins dream wedding

WEDDING WINNERS: Perry and White

Justin Perry from Wells, Maine looks like a typical 25-year-old man. At a recent appointment at the MGH Cancer Center, flanked by his supportive parents and loving fiancée, Michelle White, he doesn’t look like he is fighting a diagnosis of stage 4 lung cancer.

A robust athlete and nonsmoker, Perry first became sick three years ago when a never-ending cold and shortness of breath persuaded him to seek medical care in Boston. It was at the MGH where he first met Justin Gainor, MD, and Alice Shaw, MD, both of the Cancer Center, who were studying a rare, genetic mutation, ALK1, that Perry learned was responsible for his life-threatening illness.

He has since been treated successfully with different regiments of targeted therapies and in December 2015 started a new clinical trial that has shown significant positive results against his cancer.

Nevertheless, Perry and White were anxious to move ahead more quickly with future plans for marriage and a family. To hasten their goal, they entered the “Real Maine Weddings” contest for the chance at a $100,000 all-expenses-paid wedding in their home state.

The winners from among almost a dozen couples would be chosen by daily online voting as well as participant votes from the vendors who would help the winning couple realize their wedding goals.

Perry reached out to the MGH community to help rally the troops for votes and support. “Everyone at MGH went above and beyond and helped each and every day toward winning this wedding,” said Perry. “They cared about me, checked in daily and treated me like family.And we won!Thank you to everyone. I can’t wait for Michelle and me to have the wedding of our dreams!”

Perry and White will be married Oct. 21, followed by a seven-day honeymoon in Aruba.

Read more articles from the 03/25/16 Hotline issue.

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