By Philippine Daily Inquirer
Asia News Network
One father brought new meaning to this time-honored tradition when he accompanied his youngest daughter on her special day while he was ill and bed-bound.
A picture of the walk simply captioned “A Father’s Love” posted on Aug. 9 quickly went viral and currently has 22,000 likes and 15,000 shares as of this writing. The picture was captured by Law Tapalla Photography, the official wedding photographer.
The bride, Charlotte Gay Villarin, has her fingers laced around those of her father who, despite being weak, looks lovingly at his daughter from a stretcher, which is being pulled down the aisle. On the bride’s left side is her mother.
Charlotte talks to her father while in an ambulance on her wedding day.//Image: Law Tapalla Photography.
Villarin said her father was supposed to go down the aisle on a wheelchair. But because he was so weak on the wedding day, he had to be brought down from the ambulance they hired via stretcher.
Paradox Films, which documented the wedding through video, shared that Tatay Pedro or Papu called his daughter “Love.” The first part of the video pays tribute to him, proving that the wedding was as much as his as it was the couple’s.
Villarin admitted in a Facebook post last Aug. 10 that the wedding was “not as happy as it should be,” considering her father’s condition.
From a December wedding, the date had to be pushed back to August due to her father’s weakening state. She shared that aside from the stress of wedding planning within a month, “sleepless nights” were also spent taking care of her father who was “in and out of the hospital.”
Still, there was much happiness on the occasion. “As I always say, this wedding is not just for me and for Maku. This wedding is mostly for my papu. He’s been waiting for this moment, and finally we made it. His dream of walking with me to the altar became so possible by the grace of the Lord.”
Papu hugs the groom Maku.//Image: Law Tapalla Photography.
Exhausting as the experience was, the expedited preparations were well worth it. Villarin announced on Tuesday, Aug. 14, that Papu had passed away. It seems this father knew he had one last mission before breathing his last—to testify for undying love.