Wedding joy for Sunderland couple Michael and Sarah today

Michael Duggan and Sarah Jane Thurlow's wedding dreams come true today.

Saturday, 16th April 2016, 5:00 am
Updated Saturday, 16th April 2016, 3:02 pm
City radio station Sun FM has arranged a wedding for terminal bowel cancer sufferer Michael Duggan and his partner Sarah-Jane Thurlow as part of its Christmas Wish campaign.

The couple’s wedding plans hit the headlines at Christmas when Michael, 39, had been given just two years to live after cancer spread from his bowel.

“Michael was diagnosed in January 2013, but they said they could cure him and he was given the all-clear,” said Sarah.

But when Michael went into hospital for a routine operationas part of his recovery, the terrible news emerged: “The surgeon found the cancer was back.

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“He sewed him back up, woke him up, and told us there was no cure. They have given us two years.”

Family and friends hd raised £20,000 to give the couple a chance to create some happy memories, which they had planned to use to get married.

But city Radio station Sun FM stepped in to help with the big day as part of its Christmas Wish campaign and the couple, of Proctor Square, Plains Farm, will tie the knot at St John’s Methodist Church, in Ashbrooke, this afternoon.

“I am just so nervous – I want everything to be perfect,” said Sarah.

She and Michael have been overwhelmed by the kindness they have been shown since the story broke at Christmas.

“It has been absolutely fantastic,” she said.

“We just can’t thank everybody enough, especially Helen, from Sun FM, who has supported me every step of the way.”

Michael’s school friend Julie McKitterick nominated the couple for Sun FM’s Christmas Wishes in the hope they could enjoy some quality time together with Sarah’s children, 22-year-old Robert and Jade, 17. The couple had planned to use the Happy Memories fund to go on honeymoon, but have had to put the plan on hold.

“Michael is back into chemotherapy on Tuesday,” said Sarah. “It is back to business as usual straight away.”