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Flashback: Man Hires Choir To Surprise Wife with Multiple Sclerosis on Their Anniversary

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In 2016, Carl Gilbertson wanted to plan something special for his wife, Laura, for their 10th anniversary. Making it a decade together calls for celebration, and Carl knew just the right people to make their day spectacular.

Stephanie Carr, a friend, happened to be the head of Musical Theatre at Liverpool Media Academy, so the idea of a flash mob was born.

Laura has multiple sclerosis, and Carl picked Bruno Mars‘ “Just the Way You Are” for the academy’s students to sing at Liverpool ONE, a shopping complex.

The video of the momentous event opens with a description: ‘To celebrate his tenth anniversary Carl Gilbertson enlisted the help of students representing Liverpool Media Academy…”

“The flashmob acted as a declaration of love from Carl to his wife, Laura, who suffers from multiple sclerosis…”

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“I was a lot more nervous on Saturday than I was on my wedding day,” Carl told the Liverpool Echo. “I’ll probably get a bit of stick from the lads when I get back to Anfield for the new season.”

Carr said she was thrilled to be a part of the couple’s celebration.

“He asked me to come up with something; at first we were going to come up with a dance routine, but then we thought it has to be a song, and then he decided the song,” she said.

“It was really emotional; it was a bit overwhelming and it was a happy occasion celebrating the 10 years. I was just honoured and proud that I could be apart of it.

“The students gave up their time, and they were all honoured, at the end they were all crying, it was such an emotional day.”

The next year, Laura got her husband back with a surprise of her own.

“For those of you who may only know my Laura from the crying woman at her Flashmob last year, let me introduce you [to] the ‘real’ one,” Carl posted on Facebook in 2017. “Laughing her head off at her husband when she realises she has managed to scam me into thinking we were going to mark my 40th Birthday with a quiet lunch with just my parents and in-laws when in reality she’s organised a full on surprise party!”

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“If I’d have known a full restaurant were going to be singing Happy Birthday to me I’d have never worn a white shirt to show off the red face!”

Not every anniversary involves flash mobs and giant crowds — especially not in a year such as 2020. But Carl still publicly proclaims his love for his wife.

“Sometimes I know we can all concentrate on the things that mighta, coulda maybe even shoulda been,” he posted on July 22. “But sometimes it’s important to count on the things that are.”

“Fourteen years ago today, my Laura gave me her trust and her love and I promised to do my best to make her happy every day. I hope this picture sums our marriage up. Thanks my babe for another year of us.”

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Amanda holds an MA in Rhetoric and TESOL from Cal Poly Pomona. After teaching composition and logic for several years, she's strayed into writing full-time and especially enjoys animal-related topics.
As of January 2019, Amanda has written over 1,000 stories for The Western Journal but doesn't really know how. Graduating from California State Polytechnic University with a MA in Rhetoric/Composition and TESOL, she wrote her thesis about metacognitive development and the skill transfer between reading and writing in freshman students.
She has a slew of interests that keep her busy, including trying out new recipes, enjoying nature, discussing ridiculous topics, reading, drawing, people watching, developing curriculum, and writing bios. Sometimes she has red hair, sometimes she has brown hair, sometimes she's had teal hair.
With a book on productive communication strategies in the works, Amanda is also writing and illustrating some children's books with her husband, Edward.
Austin, Texas
Languages Spoken
English und ein bißchen Deutsch
Topics of Expertise
Faith, Animals, Cooking