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​Leicester woman takes on marathon after two year old nephew’s stroke

Press Release   •   Apr 12, 2018 10:58 BST

Vicki Martin, a scientist from Leicester is taking on the Virgin Money London Marathon to raise money for the Stroke Association on Sunday 22 April 2018, after her nephew had a stroke aged just two years old.

Vicki’s nephew, Jacob Miller, had a stroke in October 2013, causing him to lose all movement and feeling in the right side of his body.

Vicki, 40, said: “I don’t think I will ever forget the feeling when my mum rang to tell me what had happened, or the horror of seeing my beautiful little nephew lying in a hospital bed unable to move one side of his body. In those first 24 hours we were told that the damage was irreversible and that he could have learning difficulties and be wheelchair bound.”

“He was cared for by doctors at Birmingham Children’s hospital, who specialise in childhood stroke. They gave us hope that he could recover and slowly but surely, after many months of physiotherapy, they fixed him. The best moment was watching his cheeky little smile come back. Jacob was so lucky. Now he is doing well at school and he is the star striker in his football team.

“I’ve always wanted to fundraise for the Stroke Association, to help fund research in the hope that more can be done to fix the devastating effects of stroke. I’ll be 41 just before the marathon and have never run more than a half marathon, but I want to do this for my now not so little nephew. He is my hero, and he reminds me almost daily that nothing is impossible.”

Emma Evans, Events Manager at the Stroke Association, said: “There are around 1.2 million people in the UK who are living with the devastating impact of stroke. We’re thrilled Vicki is taking on this challenge to raise much needed funds for the Stroke Association’s work and we’re looking forward to cheering her on as she makes her way through London.

“A stroke can happen to anyone at any time, including children, and it turns lives upside down in an instant. With the support of people likeVicki we can reach out to more stroke survivors and their families as they rebuild their lives.”

There are over 400 childhood strokes a year in the UK, which equals more than one child every day. Stroke can affect children’s psychological and social development and they need specialist care to help them recover and to adapt to the effects.

To sponsor Vicki, please visit: https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/vickimartin1

  • A stroke is a brain attack which happens when the blood supply to the brain is cut off, caused by a clot or bleeding in the brain. There are more than 100,000 strokes in the UK each year; that is around one stroke every five minutes. There are over 1.2 million people in the UK living with the effects of stroke. 
  • Stroke Association is a charity. We believe in life after stroke and together we can conquer stroke. We work directly with stroke survivors and their families and carers, with health and social care professionals and with scientists and researchers. We campaign to improve stroke care and support people to make the best recovery they can. We fund research to develop new treatments and ways of preventing stroke. The Stroke Helpline (0303 303 3100) provides information and support on stroke. More information can be found at www.stroke.org.uk