Dying bride has dream wedding with the help of friends and strangers

At just 27, Caleigh Haber is simultaneously sharing her lifelong dream of getting married and living her worst nightmare.

Caleigh Haber has been hospitalized with cystic fibrosis most of her life. After being rejected for a second lung transplant, she and her fiancé decided to get married and embrace the remainder of her life together. (Photo: Instagram)

Haber has cystic fibrosis, a genetic disease that causes persistent infections and sticky buildup of mucus in the lungs, pancreas, and other organs. The California resident has spent most of her life in hospitals, but was hopeful after a recent lung transplant that she would live a long, healthy life with her partner, Bryan Takayama.


However, just a week ago, Haber got the news that her body rejected the lungs, and with her health rapidly declining, doctors say she is not an ideal candidate for another transplant.


“With low weight, failing kidneys, declining lung function, and [brittle] diabetes the doctors’ medical expertise tells them I’m not a candidate for surviving a double lung transplant,” she wrote on her Instagram. “‘If it was between giving myself and another person with better qualifications the single pair of lungs available, I too would be forced to agree that the more qualified person receive the lungs.”


The health problems didn’t stop her from getting married to the love of her life, Bryan Takayama, 25,  who she met a year ago. The couple had originally planned an engagement party for Saturday, but with the help of friends and strangers, in just seven days, her engagement party turned into the fairy tale wedding of her dreams.


“When you have a love as strong as we do one person’s downfall is also the others,” Haber shared. “We ride the wave of life together no matter how large or scary. So tonight we’ve devised a plan to put all our last eggs into living.”


A close friend set up a GoFund Me page to help Haber have the wedding and honeymoon she always wanted. On Saturday evening, that dream became a reality as Haber and Takayama said, “I do.”


The GoFund me has surpassed the original $10,000 goal and is now at nearly $21,000. The newlyweds sent a heartfelt thank-you message to all those who contributed.

Haber wrote that she is “overwhelmed with emotion that you have all supported us and shown us unconditional love. As we begin this journey sharing a life together it is so important to have a village behind us.”


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