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Couple in emotional vow renewal

By Katia Harston, Chief Reporter Thursday 5th June 2014
Ian Pratt and his wife Catherine

WHEN Ian Pratt and his wife renew their wedding vows this summer, he knows it may be the last anniversary they celebrate.

Ian, 44, suffers from motor neurone disease, which is incurable and causes weakness and wasting of muscles. Those affected usually die within three to five years.

Since his diagnosis in September 2012, Ian, of Newhill Road, Monk Bretton, has lost a third of his body weight and the disease is slowly shutting down his body.

Even the most basic tasks have become difficult, such as making a cuppa because he can't lift a kettle, brushing his teeth, sucking through a straw, drying himself after a shower or turning a key in the car ignition.

"I could be gone tomorrow, it can be really aggressive," he said. "There is not a day goes by you don't live and breathe this disease.

"When I was diagnosed I was told to expect to live three to five years and I am now two years down.

"You just live everyday and do what you need to do. I have always been positive and always will be but days it's tough."

He said living with the disease puts a lot of pressure on wife Catherine, also 44.

"We've got to cram 30 or 40 years of happiness in to just a few years. That's why we are renewing our vows.

"In my head it may be the last year we celebrate our marriage and I suppose it will be the last party.

"We're going to renew them at the same York hotel we got married in, the day after our fifth wedding anniversary. We're even going to have the same wedding cake.

"I've told Catherine I am determined to be able to walk down the aisle."

Since his diagnosis, Ian has thrown himself into raising awareness of the disease and has fundraised about £5,000 to date.

CommentsClick here to add a comment...
Posted by Michael Shepherd I Sun 8th Jun 2014 at 10:40am

I know and have worked with both Ian and Catherine and have been following Ians progression and struggle with this disease from the beginning. Very sad. Very brave people. My heart goes out to them.

Posted by Sallie Taylo I Mon 9th Jun 2014 at 6:49pm

You two have a love that no one can part.God bless you both.

Posted by Dave Lingwood I Tue 10th Jun 2014 at 1:11pm

Good luck to you both, hope you get your wish to walk down the aisle. Lost my dad to this cruel and horrible disease, It is reassuring to know that research is being carried out to find a cure, albeit too late for such as yourself. Soldier on brave man