Just two months after a cancer-stricken couple tied the knot in a fairytale wedding gifted by the community, the New Jersey groom lost his battle against cancer.
Kevin Sochanchak, of Pennsauken Township, was fighting stomach and esophageal cancer when he died Sunday evening. He was 27.
"Kevin, my sweet husband, I can’t believe this is really happening. I wish it was just a dream and I could hug [and] squeeze you again," his widow Ashley Sochanchak, who was also diagnosed with cancer, wrote in an emotional tribute on Instagram. "You’re amazing, and I’m so proud to be your wife."
The high school sweethearts who battled cancer together for most of their relationship were married in February after winning an all-expenses-paid wedding from a social media contest sponsored by the Adelphia Restaurant catering hall last December.
“It was everything I dreamt it would be and more,” Ashley told InsideEdition.com in a previous interview. “It was like a fairytale ending to everything that we’ve been through.”
Their wedding date — which also marked the couples’ 10-year anniversary — had been long put off due to various treatments both the bride and the groom had undergone. In fact, Kevin was placed on hospice care just nine days before the big day.
Ashley was in remission last year, after being diagnosed with thyroid cancer when she was 18, just three years after the pair met.
"It was just full of shock to find out that he had cancer [after] everything we had already been through," Ashley said.
Following their wedding, the newlyweds were once again struck by misfortune when they said their home was broken into and thieves made off with Kevin’s ATV and motorcycle.
"I finally got [Kevin] outside yesterday, and then he went into the garage and found that," Ashley told InsideEdition.com.
In a Facebook post, Ashley wrote they are heartbroken, not because they lost $7,000 worth of possessions, but because they felt unsafe in their homes.
"[It] only made him more depressed than he already was," she wrote. "No one sees the [hardships] we actually face with having cancer because we try to always put a brave face on."
The Pennsauken Police Department did not respond to InsideEdition.com's request for comment at the time.