EVERETT — Darrell Stacey might have been thinking of the line in wedding vows — in sickness and in health — when he proposed to Maggie Wellman.
She was sickened with a virus in October 2016. “He said he was going to the store to get something to make me feel better,” she said.
When he returned, she reached into the grocery bag looking for chicken soup. To her surprise, at the bottom of the bag there also was a black box. She opened it to find a ring.
“What’s this?” she asked.
“It only goes on one finger,” he responded. “Do you want it?”
Stacey, 48, is a commercial crab fisherman. Wellman, 47, is a phlebotomist at Providence Regional Cancer Partnership.
On Friday, they were married near the bistro in the Everett hospital’s lobby, the site of their first date three years ago.
Wellman was accompanied by her two daughters, Hannah, 15, and Emma, 11.
The couple, who live in Marysville, had planned twice before to say their vows. First they thought about a trip to Las Vegas. But those plans were scrubbed by the illness of a family member.
In the spring, they planned to fly to Disneyland and get married while her girls were on spring break. But Disneyland had a lot of rules for couples wanting to get married there.
So instead, they decided just to have a family vacation and get married later.
Wellman said Stacey’s larger-than-life personality and the love and care with which he treats her daughters were some of the characteristics that made him want to be her partner for life.
Stacey had one word when asked what quality he most appreciated in his wife. “Devotion,” he said.
Hospital workers, some dressed in scrubs, and people passing through the hospital lobby gathered to watch the couple as they said their vows and exchanged rings.
“This is the happiest thing I’ve seen in some time,” said Sarah Zugish, a hospital employee who works in housekeeping.
“Thanks for sharing your joy with us — it’s sweet,” she told Wellman.
The couple hope to honeymoon on a repeat visit to Disneyland next year.
Wellman’s coworkers organized an informal reception for the couple. Then it was time for Wellman to change back into hospital scrubs to finish her shift.
No home celebration was planned. “It will probably be a typical Friday night with pizza and a movie,” she said.
Sharon Salyer: 425-339-3486; firstname.lastname@example.org.