St. Jude cancer survivors marry after meeting as patients

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — It’s about two people. Both diagnosed with cancer as children, and both treated at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

“I get teary-eyed thinking about it. I think there’s no better marriage of a city and a place than there is between Memphis and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital,” Joel said.

There was no better place for Joel and Lindsey Alsup to get married than at St. Jude on September 1st.

“Which was the first day of National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, because all of these pieces have come together to give us out ‘happily ever after.’ Now it’s our turn to pass that gift on,” Lindsey said.

Their journey started some 25 years ago. That’s when Lindsey was diagnosed with acute Leukemia.

“And at the age of 10, I went from being a kid who had her whole life ahead of her to thinking that this cancer was a death sentence for me. But fortunately, our family found hope and support through St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital,” she said.

Joel was 7-years-old when he was diagnosed with a cancerous bone tumor.

“They discovered a tumor in my right arm. It had grown large enough that it broke a bone in my arm near my shoulder.”

Joel would eventually lose his right arm.

The pair developed a friendship during their time at St. Jude, which grew stronger.

“When I met this guy, when I was in treatment, I admired him. I looked up to him, I thought he was such an incredible person. We grew in our friendship over the years,” Lindsey said.

Several years later when we both started working at the hospital, Joel decided to take their friendship to another level.

“I was finally brave enough to tell her that I liked her, not only that I loved her. Luckily she felt the same way,” he said.

“I could have never fathomed that I would be sitting her today at his side as his wife, having the privilege to married on the grounds of the place that saved our lives,” Lindsey said.

Lindsey and Joel hope their story of survival and love will help others in their fight against cancer.

The couple is also promoting the St. Jude Walk/Ride which takes place this Saturday.

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