Jonathon Wells, a devoted husband, and soon-to-be father, tragically lost his life before getting the chance to meet his daughter. The devastating news came when Jonathon was diagnosed with terminal cancer on the same day his wife, Sarah, discovered she was pregnant.
Their journey together began in 2017, and their love story blossomed with Jonathon’s impressive cooking skills, which rivaled those of Gordon Ramsay. They exchanged vows in November 2021, eagerly anticipating the arrival of their first child.
Despite living with chronic inflammatory bowel disease, and ulcerative colitis, Jonathon managed his condition well and lived a vibrant and joyful life, according to Sarah. However, shortly after their marriage, he started experiencing severe abdominal pain, leading to a diagnosis of a bowel tumor in May 2022.
Initially, there was hope that Jonathon would recover after undergoing surgery, but subsequent tests revealed the devastating news that the cancer had already spread and was incurable. On that same fateful day, Sarah received the joyful news of her pregnancy, creating a bittersweet mix of emotions for the couple.
Sarah reminisced, “It was a bittersweet day. We were heartbroken at the diagnosis yet thrilled to be having a baby. Jonathon couldn’t wait to be a dad, and I believe that’s what kept him fighting for so long.” Regular scans were arranged, allowing Jonathon to stay involved in the pregnancy and witness the growth of Sarah’s baby bump.
Discovering they were expecting a daughter, the couple lovingly chose the name Ophelia for their unborn child. Despite his medical challenges, Jonathon displayed incredible strength and resilience. Even while undergoing chemotherapy, he found the energy to decorate the nursery and cook a family barbecue, all while connected to his treatment through a PICC line.
Sarah fondly remembered Jonathon’s determination, sharing, “His resilience was amazing. Even on Christmas Eve, he was intending to cook Christmas dinner; he made lists and drew diagrams of the table and planning. As a chef, he was a perfectionist.” Although Jonathon’s brother and Sarah ultimately prepared the Christmas meal, it brought them comfort to know that it received Jonathon’s rare approval.
Sadly, just two days after Christmas, Jonathon was readmitted to the hospital, and Sarah was informed that he had entered end-of-life care. She stood by his side until New Year’s Eve when he peacefully passed away.
Three weeks later, Ophelia arrived in the world, induced a week early. Sarah expressed a mix of emotions, acknowledging the heartbreak of Ophelia growing up without her father, yet finding solace in the fact that their daughter bears a striking resemblance to Jonathon. Sarah firmly believes that Jonathon’s spirit lives on through their precious daughter, watching over them from above.
In honor of Jonathon’s memory, the family plans to organize several fundraising walks to support Crohn’s and Colitis UK. Sarah emphasized the need for increased awareness and resources for individuals affected by Crohn’s and colitis, as there is currently no cure and limited treatment options available.
Sarah concluded, “We hope our charity walks, in Jonathon’s memory, will go some way to changing that.”