Both Matt Weeks, 50, and Sara Smouther, 38, from Indiana were both born with Huntington's Disease.
Huntington's Disease is a rare, terminal neurological illness that affects movement, mood and thinking abilities. Sara Smouther and her husband Matt Weeks both inherited the condition and knew that they had only a short time to live as this degenerative disease has no cure. Administrators at Summerfield described Huntington's as a combination of Parkinson’s, ALS, dementia and schizophrenia. “What we do is we encourage them to live every moment they have,” said Tasheena Duncan, administrator at Summerfield Healthcare Center in Cloverdale where the couple met, according to FOX 59. “We service a population that is often forgotten. When people receive that diagnosis, a lot of times, they are cast aside. When you give someone love — that is the best medicine.”
Smouther, 38, and Weeks, 50, first met in April 2021 and fell in love during activities at the center. He proposed to Smouther at the facility’s annual prom with some help from the staff. “He didn’t think he would ever get married after he was diagnosed with Huntington’s,” said Smouther. “I’m thankful for someone with Huntington’s who understands me. He is just my world.” Her mother Terri Catino, added, “Sara told me the other day, I just love taking care of Matt. I think it will be a sad day when one goes first, but they will always look at the memories and the love that they have.”
Six months after the proposal they exchanged vows in front of family and close friends. They also danced with the help of others to Ed Sheeran’s song “Thinking Out Loud.” They also danced to “Kiss Me” by Sixpence None the Richer. In her 20s, Smouther was a vibrant, outgoing publishing executive and when Weeks was younger he used to work in in the music industry before his diagnosis. According to PEOPLE, his health deteriorated over the years and he was forced to quit the job he loved. "There's an expression in the Huntington's community which goes, 'Today is the best day of the rest of my life,' because it's just a steady decline," said Weeks' older brother Mark. "It strips away your physical abilities and your mental awareness."
Couple who were BOTH diagnosed with Huntington’s disease marry in hospice carehttps://t.co/twlTjax9ye— Internewscast (@Internewscast1) May 26, 2022
Despite it all, the couple found love and comfort in each other. "They have such a special connection," said Dr. Christopher James, Smouther's neurologist. "It's a wonderful reminder that even though this disease, it can be so devastating, people can still experience love and friendship. It's given them a reason to keep living." Weeks tragically passed away on Wednesday, "Sara was holding his hand and he went peacefully," said Catino. "God called him home." Their love is truly inspiring!
Couple With Same Terminal Illness Found 'Joy' Together and Married. She Held His Hand in His Final Moments https://t.co/Hh0mvRnxpf— People (@people) August 3, 2022
Cover Image Source: YouTube | FOX59 News