On March 5, just three days before his passing, James Gleason was able to walk his daughter, Anne, down the aisle during an intimate wedding ceremony in the BWH Chapel.
After gathering enough strength, Gleason was also able to attend his daughter’s formal wedding with family and friends on March 7, and walk her down a much longer aisle, as planned. He passed away peacefully at home the next day.
Gleason’s wife, Debbie, and Anne recently shared a letter with BWH and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute caregivers and friends to thank them for all they did to care for their loved one during the last three years. Here is an excerpt from the letter:
“Everyone from the Emergency Department to the chaplains, Thoracic Surgery and Palliative Care teams and, in a very special way, the nurses on 11B, took the time to listen to us, understand our priorities and collaborate with us on a plan to give dad and our family truly the best and most holistic care possible,” wrote Anne.
“When Danny and I decided to exchange vows in the Chapel on March 5, you threw us a truly beautiful wedding, complete with flowers, programs, a photographer and videographer, party favors, and a delicious cake and lunch. It was an incredible celebration, which gave our parents a chance to meet, share stories and laugh. In walking me down the aisle and thoroughly enjoying that day, dad was able to relax and gather strength for Saturday. . . . It is with both joy and sorrow that we extend our most sincere gratitude to all of you.”