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Parents' Touching Last Dances / Nick Ehrhardt

Parents' Touching Last Dances

Weddings are times for great happiness, but sometimes that joy becomes bittersweet, as it did recently for two California families.

In Victorville, Lisa Wilson and her fiancé, Robert Pantoja, tossed out their plans for a big affair and moved their wedding to the Irvine Medical Center and into the hospital room of Wilson's father, David, who was in the final stages of terminal cancer. The couple relocated the ceremony and moved up the date by a week so that David could dance with his daughter at her wedding.

Wilson later told, "I said, 'Daddy, I want to do my father-daughter dance with you.' He said, 'I can't dance,' and I said, 'You don't have to. I want to dance with your hands.'"

David Wilson died Sept. 2, a little over a week after the wedding. He and Lisa danced to Whitney Houston's rendition of "I Will Always Love You."

In Dublin, a similar scenario played out for Mary Ann Manning, who died of breast cancer Sept. 8, just three days after dancing at her son Ryan's wedding. Manning, who was diagnosed with breast cancer shortly after the death of another son, held on to make it to her son's wedding thanks to her "strength, determination and stubbornness," according to her obituary.

During the reception, Manning stood up from her wheelchair and danced with Ryan to "Somewhere Over the Rainbow."