A grieving husband has paid tribute to his ‘kind and beautiful’ wife following her death from kidney failure aged 36.
Alicia Willow-Clarke, of Cardiff, who was left paraplegic after a childhood accident, died last week, her husband Kevin, also 36, said today.
The couple, who met online, tied the knot in a stunning wedding in 2018.
Alicia Willow-Clarke, 36, from Cardiff, who became paralysed after a tragic car accident as a toddler, has sadly passed away from renal failure on May 19, two years after her dream wedding to husband Kevin
Heartbroken Kevin said: ‘Alicia told me from the start that she had a disability and was paralysed from the neck down but it didn’t matter at all.
‘She had such a wicked personality and we just laughed so much. I guess it was kind of love at first sight.
‘I loved Alicia so much and was proud to call her my wife.’
‘I feel so lucky to have met Alicia and spent the short precious time I did with her. She made me smile each and every day,’ Kevin said.
Alicia was hit by a car as a toddler and broke her neck as well as sustaining other injuries. Kevin said she never became bitter or felt sorry for her condition, and even using her electric wheelchair to join him down the aisle on their wedding day
‘I never saw her disability – I just saw a beautiful woman full of kindness and love.’
Kevin added Alicia was the ‘kindest person he ever met’ and that she was deeply loved by many.
‘To me she was the most beautiful woman in the world and I will miss her lovely smile more than words can say.
‘Her passion reflected her own life philosophy; she refused to allow her disability to constrain her. She focused on her ability not her disability.
‘Everything was possible with Alicia – she learned to knit, paint and draw with her mouth. She was determined to live every moment and do all that she could.
Kevin said he never saw Alicia as disabled, but as a kind woman, full of joy and loved by many people
Kevin admired how full of joy and passion Alicia was, saying she never felt sorry for herself or bitter.
Kevin said: ‘She was only 36 years old but she packed so much joy into her life.
‘Our wedding day in 2018 was the best day of our lives. Alicia looked beautiful in her wedding dress and she didn’t stop smiling all day and neither did I.
‘I have wonderful memories of times we share and I will love her forever.’
As a toddler Alicia had wandered out of an open door from her family home in Canton, Cardiff, when she was hit by a car and paralysed and her neck was broken.
She suffered a broken neck and has been left needing around the clock care from two nurses.
Alicia was left in a coma for eight months after the tragic accident and it wasn’t until she was five she was able to return home.
Alicia said at the time of her wedding she had found the perfect man in Kevin. Her heartbroken widow said the day they said their I-dos’ was the best day of his life
But in spite of her disability she never gave up on love and finding her soulmate.
But as she got older romantic Alicia was determined to find love and decided to start online dating.
At the time Alicia said: ‘I dreamed of finding a partner. I wanted to fall in love and have someone love me, I longed for the big white wedding.
‘I hadn’t had much luck on dates even though I was always upfront about my disability. It seemed to shock guys when I actually met them.’
But Alicia finally met security worker Kevin on a dating website – and after two years of courting the blushing bride tied the knot at a lavish white wedding.
She said: ‘For the first time I’d met a man who was seeing the real me and not my disability.’
Alicia popped the question and had to use her mouth to put the engagement ring on Kevin’s finger.
The pair got married at St Mary’s Church in Cardiff in front of 80 friends and family. Determined Alicia made her way down the aisle in her motorised wheelchair.
She said: ‘It was the best moment of my life. I thought I would burst with happiness.
‘Our wedding day was perfect. I love life with Kevin. We are so happy. The romantic in me never gave up.
‘I know Kevin adores me for who I am and that makes me feel the luckiest woman in the world.
‘I’m so proud to call him my husband and I’m looking forward to spending the rest of my life with him.’