Erie-Area Couple Gets Married in Hospital ICU After Man Diagnosed with Serious Heart Condition
Weddings are affairs of the heart. That's especially true for an Erie-area couple who got married at UPMC Presbyterian in Pittsburgh Friday.
In about a month, Matt Shilling went from healthy to hospitalized in intensive care.
While he waits to learn if he will need a heart transplant, he could not wait another day to marry his sweetheart.
Matt and Amy Harvey met in high school and then lost touch.
Seven years ago, they found each other on Facebook and reunited.
It sounds like a storybook happy ending, but "in sickness and in health" came earlier than expected for the couple.
Three weeks ago, Matt started having trouble breathing, and tests showed the problem had spread to his heart.
"Matt came to us very sick after he was diagnosed with having advanced heart failure," said Dr. Raja Padmanabhan.
He was given an artificial heart to keep his blood pumping.
After a series of tests, Matt's doctors said he may need a heart transplant, but first, he wanted to marry Amy.
"For a lot of reasons, it just refocused us and made this feel lot more important as a new start," said Matt.
"I said, 'You know, I would marry you right now. I would marry you here,'" said Amy.
Within two days, the staff at UPMC made his wish come true.
"They have such challenging jobs, then to do wedding planning on top of everything they already do," said Amy.
"I mean beyond appreciative," said Matt. "I don't have words to describe, to be honest with you."