GREENSBORO, N.C. — After 25 years of marriage, and her husband Eugene's health rapidly declining, Velvet Wharton wanted to celebrate their love - because the couple didn’t know how much longer they had left together.
The celebration of love was perfect timing because sadly we learned Eugene passed away early Saturday morning around 3:30 a.m.
Nevertheless, the couple got to celebrate their love together one last time before Eugene passed as hospital staff at Moses Cone threw the couple a beautiful wedding Wednesday afternoon.
"He is an awesome father, an awesome provider," Velvet said Wednesday, "I don't know what it's like to be without the awesome man that he is."
The two shared decades of love, sticking to their vows even when the going got tough, even after Eugene - a preacher - had his first stroke more than 10 years ago.
"Then it was like dominoes," she said, "He kept having strokes back to back."
Earlier in the week, Velvet got the news, he wasn't getting better. With that weighing heavy on her heart, she spoke with a Cone Hospital worker on Tuesday.
"I was just talking, and then all of a sudden I said, I wanted to have our wedding anniversary in October," she said, "So [the worker] said, why don’t you do it tomorrow? I was like, are you serious? For real? I said, let me ask my husband. I went, and I said will you marry me again? And he said yes."
On Wednesday, just a day later, the couple renewed their vows, surrounded by friends and family, nurses and staff.
"It was so emotional because I never ever saw so much love... It just seemed like the gates of heaven opened up and favor fell upon us!" Velvet recalled, "To see my husband, oh my God... to see him in his preacher robe, his pastor robe. He looked so handsome."
Eugene went into hospice care hours later. At the time, Velvet said she didn't know how much longer he had left, but that she wouldn't change a thing about their love story.
The family says the funeral for Eugene will be held on Friday, at Triad Cremation and Funeral Service in Greensboro.