Leslie Rivera, Make-a-Wish Wedding Bride Dies From Leukemia - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

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Leslie Rivera, Make-a-Wish Wedding Bride Dies From Leukemia

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It was a story that warmed many hearts. A Los Angeles teenager suffering from leukemia married her high school sweetheart.

We are saddened to report 18-year-old Leslie Rivera died Wednesday night from her illness.

FOX told you about Leslie's story and how the Make-A-Wish Foundation and celebrity wedding planner David Tutera created a magical wedding for Leslie, who's one wish was to marry her high school sweetheart, Daniel Mendez, who has not left her side since she was diagnosed.

Doctors tried an experimental procedure with Leslie to combat her progression with the disease. Leslie engaged in a ten dose procedure of a drug called Moxitumomab, which targets a molecule found only in leukemia cells.

Leslie Rivera met Daniel Mendez at an anti-racism event at school last October and they quickly began dating. It was barely six months before she was diagnosed with an aggressive form of leukemia. Even thought she managed to graduate from high school, she spent much of her last semester in the hospital, with Daniel by her side.

When Leslie was referred to Make-a-wish this Fall, her wish was simply to marry her best friend. The fantasy of the "Twilight" inspired ceremony came later, as celebrity wedding planner David Tutera conspired to create a magical wedding based on Leslie's dream to have a natural wedding inspired by the one in the movie, but with custom touches.

Despite her illness, Leslie looked radiant in her gown, but the couple sat during the ceremony rather than standing as they said their vows.

Tutera commented on his official Facebook page Thursday morning, "It is with a heavy heart to tell you that my beautiful Make-A-Wish America bride, Leslie, peacefully passed away last night with her husband Daniel and her family by her side. The love and prayers that you sent to her were felt, she luckily knew just how much she was loved, and today my wish is for each and every one of you to remember how precious our time on earth is."

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