High school seniors across the country have faced trials and disappointment throughout the past few months. Proms, athletic seasons, and graduations have been canceled due to nationwide lockdown measures. But two Indiana seniors have dealt with a far greater suffering and born beautiful witness to the power of love and hope.
Chase Smith and Sadie Mills, both standout athletes, had planned a future together. Sadie would attend Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) and continue her diving career, with Chase — a former nationally-ranked swimmer — by her side. Upon graduating from college, the two would exchange rings and vows and begin the rest of their lives together. Those plans suddenly changed, back in March, after Chase spoke with his doctors.
In 2014, while at a national swimming training camp, Chase developed symptoms that prompted a hospital visit. An X-Ray revealed a tumor on his femur — the product of a rare cancer known as Ewing’s sarcoma. For the next several years, the teen battled the disease, undergoing many rounds of chemotherapy and suffering multiple relapses. All was under control as he entered his senior year, but, in March, the cancer struck with a new vengeance. It had spread all over his body. Doctors told him he had three to five months to live.
Rather than succumb to sorrow, the 18-year-old turned to the love of his life. As he began to spill a plan that some would deem “crazy,” Sadie stopped him and told him, “I know exactly what you’re going to say. I wanted to tell you the same thing tonight.” And so, the two planned the wedding that they had dreamed would take place four years in the future in just four days.
On April 29, Sadie, radiant in a gorgeous white gown, walked down her parents’ driveway to the spot where Chase had first kissed her. In front of friends and family, they promised to stand by each other for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health. Chase kissed his bride, and the two joined hands and raised them towards heaven, filled with a love that could not be tarnished by any of life’s circumstances. The young groom described the day as “pure joy.”
Since their blissful nuptials, Chase and Sadie have been embracing every day with grateful and hopeful hearts. "The most important thing in my world at this point is spending time loving and laughing," Chase said. "Just living life to the fullest and loving every moment."
The husband and wife begin and end each day in prayer. Sadie disclosed that they pray for a miracle together because they trust in God. “We pray that Chase would stay on this earth longer so we can bring more people our story of love.” According to Chase, “There is so much possible with love when your love includes God.”
To love is the greatest adventure upon which one can embark and the greatest act one can perform. Though Chase Smith may not have as many years on this earth as most, he has — with the help of his faithful bride — achieved the highest heights. And, through their love, Mr. and Mrs. Smith have witnessed to the world that love is the indispensable truth that gives all value to this life.
A GoFundMe page has been established to help Chase during his heroic fight against cancer.