North Carolina couple moves up wedding so dying newborn son could take part
(NEW YORK) -- One North Carolina couple moved up their wedding unexpectedly so that their dying newborn son could take part in the ceremony.
Christopher and Patricia Armstrong didn't plan to wed inside Hospice of Davidson County in North Carolina, but when their son was given only weeks to live they decided to so that he wouldn't miss it.
Conner Armstrong was born Feb. 2 with a genetic disorder called trisomy 18, which kills about 90 percent of children before or during birth. He was diagnosed in the womb, his father told ABC News.
"When they saw the signs, it was pretty hard on both of us," Christopher, 30, recalled.
Although the couple -- who also have two young daughters -- didn't have a wedding date set, when doctors told them that Conner's diagnosis wasn't improving, they decided to get married in the hospice on March 11 so that he could be there.
"I was so excited to be marrying the love of my life and happy that everyone was there to see and witness the love that we shared," Christopher gushed, "and having the baby there was even more special."
"We planned the mini-wedding in like two days," Patricia told ABC News. "[We] gathered up a couple of family and friends and made it happen. The wedding ... was last minute, but it was one of the best days of my life."
In fact, the family trekked to Walmart to buy dresses along with Christopher's shirt and tie.
Conner died five days later on March 14, his father announced on Facebook.
He told ABC News he's appreciative for the time he had with his only son.
"I would say one of the best months of my life was getting to know him," Christopher said, "and every day he’d do something new like the smile he’d give, or the way he looked at us. He knew that we loved him and I could tell that he loved us too."
His mother said she's sharing their story to raise awareness of the disorder in hopes of doctors' eventually finding a cure.
"Maybe one day," she added.
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