Hospital chaplain ‘gives away’ bride

Staff report

TROY — When Julie Bradshaw Monnin was looking for someone to assist with one of the happiest times of her life, she turned to a person who was there in one of the most trying.

Monnin, a health unit coordinator at Upper Valley Medical Center in Troy, came to know Chaplain Dwight Smith following the unexpected death of her mother in February 2016.

“I felt as if my heart had been broken into a million zillion pieces. When I came back to work, I was trying to make it through the day. Then, Chaplain Dwight came to me, gave me a hug and told me I would be OK,” Monnin recalled.

Their connection grew, as Smith would check on Monnin, offering time to chat or a shoulder on which to cry. Over time, he became a friend. As she prepared to marry, Monnin knew it wouldn’t be complete without Smith.

“I knew he had to be a part of my special day. What better way for my friend to be part of my wedding than to be the one who ‘gave me away’ since my mom could not?” Monnin said.

Smith presided over her marriage to Rob Monnin in a ceremony Aug. 16 at the Eldean Covered Bridge down the road from the hospital.

“Hearing him pronounce us husband and wife meant more to me than I think he will ever know,” Monnin said, calling Smith her “guardian angel here on Earth.”

The Monnins reside in Sidney.

Staff report