Son's diabetes diagnosis spurs determined Burnley mum to complete one million steps charity challenge

A Burnley mum of three has completed a challenge to walk one million steps to help fund research into a cure for a condition her 11-year-old son was diagnosed with this year.

Tuesday, 5th October 2021, 12:30 pm

Kelly Ormerod actually racked up 1.5 million steps in for Diabetes UK to raise £555.

Doctors diagnosed her son Jackson with the condition after he was blue lighted to the Royal Preston Hospital after falling ill in January.

Tired and lethargic for several weeks, Kelly put Jackson's symptoms down to growing pains and his age.

Kelly Ormerod with her son Jackson who was diagnosed with diabetes in January

She said: "He was drinking more and getting up during the night a lot to go to the bathroom which are signs of diabetes, but when you are not aware of the symptoms it doesn't enter your head."

Jackson, who was 10 at the time, fell poorly while staying with his dad who took him to A and E at Burnley General Hospital before was rushed by ambulance to Preston. MRI and CT scans were carried out before doctors could tell Kelly what was wrong with her son.

It was a harrowing moment for Kelly as just three years ago she lost her parents, John and Susan Cooper, while she was on holiday with them in Egypt along with Jackson and her two daughters Molly (16) and 14-year-old Jessica.

The couple died after falling ill in their hotel room in the resort of Hurghada.

Kelly with her three children Jackson, Jessica (right) and Molly.

Kelly said: "I found myself asking them if they could help my son, just like I had with my mum and dad.

"And they couldn't answer because at that stage they didn't know what was wrong with Jackson."

The relief when Jackson, who spent four days in hospital, was diagnosed was immense for Kelly even though it was a life changing moment.

Having type one diabetes means he has to inject insulin daily and keep a close eye on his blood sugar levels.

Diabetes is a disease that occurs when your blood glucose, also called blood sugar, is too high.

Blood glucose is your main source of energy and comes from the food you eat. Insulin, a hormone made by the pancreas, helps glucose from food get into your cells to be used for energy. Sometimes your body doesn’t make enough—or any—insulin or doesn’t use insulin well. Glucose then stays in your blood and doesn’t reach your cells.

Kelly said: "Jackson has just taken it all in his stride.

"I have told him this will not limit what he wants to do in life, only that he has to take extra steps to keep healthy."

Completing the one million steps challenge has seen Kelly rising from her bed at 5am to notch a couple of thousand up before work and the school run. She has also climbed a couple of hills in the challenge and walking is now part of her regular fitness routine.

Donations are still being accepted until the end of October so if you would like to add to Kelly's total please click HERE.