This is the heart-wrenching moment a bride fights back tears as she hears her dead father speak through a letter on her wedding day.
Todd Excell lost his battle with cancer on Mother’s Day 2001 when his daughter, Emily, was just eight-years-old.
Growing up, brave Emily, of Liverpool, New York, lived out her adolescent years without the presence of her father.
Bride Emily Darbey was brought to tears on her wedding day when she was surprised by a letter from her late father
Still wanting to be there for his daughter, Mr Excell decided to prepare a letter for each milestone Emily reached in life — but he knew he did not have enough time.
Instead, the doting father chose to write a letter to be read out on Emily’s wedding day.
He dictated what he wanted to say, typed his words and placed them inside a freezer — ready for Emily’s big day.
Todd Excell, who lost his life to cancer, wrote the letter to his daughter when he knew he would not be alive to celebrate her big day
The letter was typed and frozen by Todd before his death in 2001 and kept as a surprise for Emily and her new husband Shakeal Darbey
Emily married her husband Shakeal Darbey on October 4 2016 and, during their wedding, Mr Excell’s letter was read out by Emily’s godfather and uncle, Peter.
Clutching her new husband’s hands, a video of the moving event shows Mrs Darbey fighting back tears as she hears her father speak.
The heartfelt letter provoked sadness and laughter when Emily’s late father warned that he would haunt Shakeal if he ever mistreated his daughter
The letter was read by Emily’s godfather and uncle, Peter, at the couple’s wedding in Liverpool, New York
The couple were married on 4 October 2016, just over 15 years after her father’s passing
The loving father wrote: ‘To my dearest daughter, Emily.
‘You are my heart and soul and always will be.’
He added: ‘I love you, Emily. I know I would love your new husband. To your new husband, I will be walking with you, too.’
But, just when Emily’s husband Shakeal thought he was off the hook, Mr Excell had prepared a special message — just for him.
Todd pictured with Emily as a toddler. He died from cancer on Mother’s Day 2001, when Emily was just eight years old
He wrote: ‘To the new husband.
‘I will not be able to intimidate you or ask you a million questions before you date my daughter, tell you I have a gun under my bed, or ask you why you are interested in dating my daughter, take your licence plate down and the type of car you drive.
‘But what I can do — is haunt you.’
In his letter, Todd describes Emily as ‘my sunshine in my darkest days’
Despite Todd’s early passing, he was determined to be part of his daughter’s wedding and says that he remains with her in spirit
Laughter immediately filled the room as the new couple wipe tears from their eyes and looked forward to their life together.
One year later, Emily and Shakeal decided to watch letter reading again.
Emily’s mother, Suzanne Excell, told MailOnline: ‘Emily cried at the end with the pictures but was so happy for the memory she would keep.
‘Shakeal laughed again at the point of being haunted and said he is on his best behavior.
‘Some other family members that were not at the wedding were there and were so happy to see the video.’
‘YOU HAVE BEEN MY SUNSHINE IN MY DARKEST DAYS’
To my dearest daughter Emily.
You are my heart and soul and always will be.
I’m writing this letter for your wedding day to tell you how I will not be there in body but I will be there in spirit.
I remember when you were just starting to walk and what it would be to walk you down the aisle on your wedding day.
Walking is another passage to a new beginning. A wedding day is like a new beginning to a life with another person you love. You will never do anything alone.
You will have a partner to be at your side in good and bad — something I would have loved to have done for you, if I was not dying. You have found someone to be that person for you. You will know the feeling as soon as you say your vows.
You have been my sunshine in my darkest days. I want you to have the best life and love that God can give you. I’m asking you and your husband to treat each other with love and respect. I hope that you have children to love and cherish as I have with you.
My advice for you and your husband is always to say ‘I love you’ to each other. Even when you get mad at each other or disagree because you still love the other person — it’s just the other feelings that get in the way.
Love will hold the marriage together.
The other advice is be yourself and never change, that’s why you love each other.
The things you bring only bring out the best in each other. Still have friends and family to go to when problem arise, they will always have an open ear. But always listen to your heart when making decisions.
I love you, Emily. I know I would love your new husband. I will always be there as you walk anywhere. To your new husband, I will be walking with you, too.
Welcome to the family, I love you.
To the new husband… I will not be able to intimidate you or ask you a million questions before you date my daughter, tell you I have a gun under my bed, or ask you why you are interested in dating my daughter, take your licence plate down and the type of car you drive. But what I can do — is haunt you.
Treat her like a princess and the queen she will be.