Jennifer Batugo and Brian Gargano received the gift of a lifetime from breast cancer survivor and wedding officiant Elysia Skye. Jennifer and Brian thought their dreams of becoming man and wife was almost impossible when his fiancée Jennifer was diagnosed with a rare and aggressive form of breast cancer giving her only months to live. With this unexpected news, the couple wanted to act fast and pull off a wedding knowing that Jennifer’s future was now compromised by her diagnosis.
Brian called L.A. wedding officiant Elsyia Skye to help out with the wedding planning. Without knowing it, Brian came to find out that Elysia was a breast cancer survivor who also ran a non-profit breast-cancer support organization. Being so touched by the couple’s story, Elsyia set out to give them their wedding and much more—hope! Elysia first started off with an Indiegogo fund-raising campaign for the expenses of the wedding and medical procedures.
Elysia didn’t just stop there! With Elysia’s help the couple had the gorgeous venue of Yamashiro Hollywood donated for their thirty guests at the wedding and reception. Elysia also reached out to team up with the very prominent and dedicated wedding planner, Laura Guerrie. With Laura’s help, they were able to get wedding vendors all over L.A. to donate their services for the wedding. Some of the donations included refreshments, food, photography, videography, makeup accessories, balloons, hotel accommodations, flowers, music, a wedding cake, and a white 1959 Rolls Royce. With the help of these two determined women, Elysia and Laura were able to coordinate what was supposed to be a summer wedding in merely ten days!
Jennifer looked stunning that day in a champagne gown provided to her by a friend who was also engaged. She wore a wig donated to her that was dark and flowing that added to the beauty and confidence she exuded that day.
For Jennifer and Brian it wasn’t just the ability to pull off this extravagant wedding, but that so many people reached out to help the long distance couple and in turn gave them so much hope for their future. Brian went on to say, “There are so many bad things happening today, it’s good to know there are good people out there, willing to help complete strangers.” The wedding has made a complete change in Jennifer’s demeanor. Before Jennifer was hopeless and down with her situation and now she talks about how she is going to beat this!
If this wedding couldn’t be any more heartfelt the couple took a different spin on the traditional father-daughter dance. Both Jennifer and Brian decided to dance with the other’s respective parent in addition to their own. The last song was ‘Don’t Worry Baby” by the Beach Boys in which Brian danced with Jennifer’s mother. The twist on the dance was exactly what was needed as these two families will need each other’s love and support now more than ever.