High school seniors Chase Smith and Sadie Mills, both 18, got married on April 29 in Sadie’s front yard. Before you rush to say these two are too young, know that their wedding was packed with heightened emotions for one huge reason: The two got married a few days after Chase was told he had three to five months to live.
Chase has been battling Ewing’s sarcoma, an ultra-rare and aggressive form of cancer, for the last six years. He and Sadie had been dating for six months before deciding to tie the knot. Sadie said, “Overall, it was the best day of my life. I’ve always wanted an outdoor wedding and the fact that Chase came up with the idea to have the altar right where we went on our first date, where we had our first kiss, that meant a lot to me.”
Until Chase received this updated prognosis, the two had much different plans in mind. Chase and Sadie originally planned to graduate high school and go to college together, and they hoped to continue their swimming and diving careers. They also planned to get married, but much further down the road. However, Chase’s new prognosis cast a sense of urgency over all of their plans, and getting married now made the most sense to them.
This March, Chase learned that his cancer had returned, and this time there was just too much of it. Chase found out that he has tumors all over his body, and that even with more treatment, the odds are no longer in his favor. So he and Sadie made a choice, and it’s one they’re really happy with.
Chase told People, “We definitely were thinking about getting married in the future and we knew we wanted to. A lot of people do say, ‘Oh they’re getting married because he has a potential to pass away soon,’ and that’s not at all why we decided to get married. It was more of just a wake-up call that, ‘Hey, God wants you two together.’”
Sadie said that it was just meant to be: “What was cool about that was whenever we were first talking about getting married, Chase brought it up and I already knew what he was gonna say. So I interrupted him and said, ‘No, I know the same thing.’ So that was definitely a God thing that the time was right.”
Over the next four days, Sadie and Chase told their parents about their plans and then went on to plan out the entire wedding. Sadie’s parents were especially supportive. “I have the best two parents I could possibly have,” she said. “For them to be a hundred percent behind me and my choices and my decisions on who I love and who I wanted to marry when I wanted to marry, it couldn’t mean any more to me than what it did.”
Chase and Sadie also kept with tradition and didn’t see one another until the ceremony. Chase says that he was completely blown away. “I was so excited to see her ’cause I hadn’t seen her all day. It was the pure reaction of being able to see her… It was like a hit in the chest of emotion.”
Chase and Sadie also know that they’re facing a future that is extra uncertain, given Chase’s prognosis. However, they’re happy to face it together. Chase says, “That’s 110% due to the trust in God. With God, I always know I have a shot. As long as he’s by my side, I always have the strength to do whatever.”
Chase and Sadie’s story has inspired people from all over the world. Many have felt moved to write emails to the Indianapolis Star, the local paper that broke the story. One person, Zaq Harrison, wrote, “Time is the most precious gift we are given. I know this young couple will cherish each and every moment they have together. How many of us can say that?”
Mike and Billie Rouse are another married couple who saw echos of their own story in Chase and Sadie. They met while in high school together and quickly fell in love. During his junior year, Mike was diagnosed with adenoid cystic carcinoma and lost part of his face. Doctors also told him he had only five years to live. Happily, Mike and Billie have been married for decades.
Billie shared some advice for Chase and Sadie: “All we knew was that five weeks or five years, we wanted to be together. We knew about living for now and loving the simple stuff. Live big young friends. We carry you in our hearts.”