Watch the moment disabled three-year-old girl walks further than ever before - to accompany her mum down the aisle

Walking down the aisle is a major milestone for anyone – but to three-year-old Evie Jackson, it was a double celebration.

By Catherine Musgrove
Wednesday, 9th March 2022, 12:30 pm
Updated Wednesday, 9th March 2022, 2:32 pm

For the youngster from Leyland got to be part of her mum’s bridal party at Foxfield County Hotel in Whalley– and walked the furthest she has ever managed unaided.

Birth problems

Evie was diagnosed with HIE (hypoxic-ischaemic encephalopathy) at birth and her family was told she might never walk, talk or been able to feed.

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Evie Jackson walking down the aisle towards her dad Dan

Mum Michelle Jackson, 31, had a normal pregnancy with no indication of any problems but an undiagnosed breech resulted in Evie suffering from an acute loss of blood and oxygen flowing to her brain.

Her first four weeks were spent in a neo natal unit in ICU and then High Dependency where she was fed by tube and had to have regular suctioning as she couldn’t control her saliva due to having no suck/swallow reflex.

Evie has since been diagnosed with cerebral palsy. She also has hip dysplasia which has resulted in two operations and a cast from the waist down for three months each time.

Rainbow Hub

Evie Jackson at Rainbow Hub

The family has accessed help from Derian House Children’s Hospice and also from the Rainbow Hub in Mawdesley, where Evie has been able to enjoy storytelling and songs while Michelle benefited from tips to help with Evie’s mobility.

Since restrictions have lifted, Evie now attends Rainbow Hub once a week for conductive education sessions. She started using a walking frame in January 2021 and could manage some steps by March but only took her first independent steps about three weeks before the wedding.

Michelle said: “It was as if she knew she had to walk at our wedding and she was not going to let her younger brother, Alex who is one, do something she couldn’t.

"We practised the night before and she just about made it down the aisle, but that was in an empty room.

Evie Jackson at birth

"I honestly didn’t think she would do it on the day with all the distractions but she amazed everybody and brought everyone in the room to tears.”

Michelle added: “Rainbow Hub is such an amazing place and I know Evie would not have achieved what she has without their support.”

The wedding day

The actual wedding day was third time lucky for Michelle and Evie’s dad Dan who had to postpone their wedding twice – firstly due to the complications following Evie’s birth and then because of Covid.

But they and their 80 guests had a brilliant time made even more special by Evie and their other children, Alex and Joseph.

Michelle is so grateful to Rainbow Hub that she is going to take part in the Great North Run in September to raise funds.

>>>To sponsor Michelle click here

Lyndsay Fahey, Chief Executive, Rainbow Hub, said: “When I heard about Evie I hoped that we could help and both Evie and Michelle have put in some much effort to get Evie to where she is.

"She has been wonderful, a fabulous character to have around and she has achieved so much including our Star of the Week back in January. But her amazing walk down the aisle left everyone in tears when they saw the beautiful video. They are a gorgeous family and deserve every happiness.”