A COUPLE who were both tragically widowed in their 20s have found love with each other – after meeting 18 months after their spouses passed away.
Brittany Price Brooker, 29, and Daniel Brooker, 34, both from America, lost their husband and wife within just one month of each other in 2015.
Brittany’s husband Patrick Price, 30 a parole officer, died when his heart stopped beating while at work in September.
While Daniel’s wife Lyndsie Brooker, 28, lost her battle with ovarian cancer in August of the same year.
Brittany became a single mum to her three sons Peyton, six, Evan, five, and Nathan, four – while Daniel faced life as a single dad-of-two to Aubrey, seven, and Ethan, eight.
Brittany, of Atlanta, Georgia, and Daniel, who lived three hours away in Augusta, met in February 2017 while they were helping a mutual friend who had also been widowed.
The pair instantly bonded over their shared experience and are now happily married – with friends dubbing their five-child family the Brady Bunch.
They introduced their kids to each other a month after meeting, and were thrilled when they instantly hit it off.
Britanny said: “When you lose your husband you deal with the immediate numbness of grief and loss. I kept thinking, ‘I can’t believe this is my life’.
“The hardest part was feeling married when I wasn’t. I had known Patrick since I was five years old and now he just wasn’t there anymore.
“Daniel’s wife passed away one month before Patrick. We met while we were counselling another family who had lost someone to cancer.
“We formed a friendship and we emailed back and forth for a month before we talked on the phone.
“That first conversation was five hours long. We connected on every level. When you walk through death you start to look at life differently.
“It was an amazing blessing to meet Daniel. He came and picked me up and we went on a date in February in Atlanta. It was very organic. The kids all got along so well.
“We started spending time together every weekend. Daniel and his kids would travel to Atlanta. We started talking about marriage right away.”
Daniel added: “My wife Lyndsie was first diagnosed with ovarian cancer when she was 19 and battled the disease at three different points.
“In early 2014 they discovered her cancer had spread to her stomach and lymph nodes.
“She had chemo and radiation but there came a point where her doctors told us there was nothing more they could do.
“After she died I had two or three months of heavy, heavy grief where I was physically sick from the pain.
“I asked God, ‘Why?’ I couldn’t understand. I kept Aubrey and Ethan close to me.
“It’s hard because when you get married you have a plan – to have kids, to buy a house, to get a dog.
“When your partner dies suddenly there is no normal, there is no plan.
“When I met Brittany, I knew immediately that there was something different about her.
“It wasn’t just that she had been where I had been, it was that I saw where she was going.
“The way she pointed people towards Jesus was attractive and she’s beautiful. She has such a loving influence on the kids.”
Financial marketing consultant Daniel and his kids relocated to Atlanta, where he and Brittany wed five months after meeting in July 2017.
Brittany, who travels around the US speaking about her experience with loss, said: “Blending your family has its challenges.
“It is two families coming together so it’s not going to be easy.
“You also have to be very open and understanding about talking about their mum and dads that are in heaven.
“It was chaotic. We were like a travelling circus. It takes a while for your children to feel that security in their family.”
Daniel added: “The first year was tough but I think we all really feel like a family now.”
The couple regularly talk about their kids’ “mum and dad in heaven” and keep Patrick and Lyndsie’s memories alive through individual scrapbooks.
Daniel said: “My kids often talk about Lyndsie and the boys talk about Patrick. They’re a part of our lives.
“Brittany is beautiful both inside and out. She’s a wonderful mother. I think our story shows that there is life after loss.”
While Brittany added: “Daniel is outgoing, he is so fun. He can bring life to anything and he’s so caring.
“The other day I looked out the window and saw him jumping on the trampoline with the kids and it melted my heart.
MOST READ IN REAL LIFE
“He makes me and the kids feel very special, valued and safe.”
In more parenting news, this luxury travel blogger mum dumps her husband and kids in economy while she flies first class.
While this mum reveals the brutal reality of her post-baby body, including bean bag boobs, a not-so-designer vagina and still lactating five YEARS after giving birth.