Mark Shelton, 54, a devoted husband has lost over 170 pounds to impersonate Elvis Presley for his wife, Lisa, 57, who is dying of cancer, ABC News is reporting. Mark and Lisa went to school together in the 1970s. They both got married and started families. Mark had a son, 23, and Lisa birthed a daughter, 19.
However, their relationships did not work out, but 10 years ago, Lisa and Mark reconnected, fell in love, and they were married in 2014. Lisa revealed that they were always destined to be together, though it took awhile for them to realize it.
“I believe that it was always the plan for Mark and I to be together. We went different directions…but God gets his way and I thank him that he brought us back together and right at the time when I needed Mark the most.”
Unfortunately, three days into their blissful marriage, Lisa found out that she had stage four lung cancer.
During one of their long conversations about cancer, Mark had asked his wife, “If I could give you anything, what do you want to do? Do you want to go to Italy? Do you want to go to Hawaii? What’s on your bucket list?”
When Lisa Shelton started drawing up her bucket list, one of the things she wanted to see more than anything was her husband to do an Elvis Presley tribute.
“Well I’m content but if I could have anything, I’d just regret not seeing you perform the music of Elvis Presley the way you did in high school—with the jumpsuit and all that.”
At the time Lisa made the request, Mark Shelton weighed over 400 pounds and did not feel ready to step into the shoes of the King of Rock n’ Roll.
One year later, Mark had lost over 170 pounds, and in front of packed audiences, he belted out golden tunes made popular by the King for his loving wife. He specifically asked for his wife to join him on stage when he started to sing “Surrender.”
Besides whittling down his weight, Mark spent most of the year planning a performance of a lifetime for his wife. He hired a band and rented the Haskell Free Library and Opera House in Derby Line in Vermont. The 54-year-old devoted husband rehearsed for four months and sold out tickets for 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. shows, using the proceeds for Lisa’s cancer treatments.
Lisa Shelton said she loved every minute of the show that was held Saturday.
“It was totally amazing. It was a dream come true. I couldn’t take the smile off my face last night. Just watching it, it was such a thrill.”
She choked back tears when she talked about her wonderful husband.
“I just thank God every day… that this man has married me and he loves me. I feel totally secure in his love and no matter what happens he’ll always be there with me… that gives me peace.”
This is not the first time that a loving husband paid homage to a wife dying of cancer. A New York photographer, Angelo Merendino, documented the breast cancer battle of his wife, Jennifer, from when she was diagnosed in April 2008 up to December 2011 when she died at 40.
They had only being married for six months when she was diagnosed with the dreaded disease.
Angelo documented Jennifer’s diagnosis, treatment, and everyday struggles for four years. In the project titled In the Battle We Did Not Choose, My Wife’s Fight With Breast Cancer, Angelo humanizes the face of cancer by showing the challenges, fears, sadness, and loneliness his wife faced. Gripping pictures include Angelo shaving his wife’s head before chemotherapy, and people in the street staring at her with looks of pity and curiosity on their faces.
However, he says, more importantly, he captured their love for one another as she bravely battled the disease.
Angelo Merendino’s has set up a foundation, Love You Share, to help people with financial assistance receiving treatment for breast cancer. Angelo pointed out that helping others was the best way to honor his wife’s memory.
[Featured Image by Bet_Noire/iStock]