Disneyland trip for girl, 4, who cheated death

Joy: Four-year-old Jessica and her family enjoying their time in Disneyland, Paris
Joy: Four-year-old Jessica and her family enjoying their time in Disneyland, Paris
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A four-year-old girl who had to learn to eat, drink and walk again after having leukaemia, has just returned from the trip of a lifetime to Disneyland Paris.

Jessica Holmes, from Catterall near Garstang and her family were nominated to go on the trip, funded annually by blood cancer charity Bloodwise, after she was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia in October 2013 when she was aged just three.

The intensity of the chemotherapy meant she suffered a compressed fractured spine and eight vertebrae were crushed.

Three months later in March 2014, Jessica ended up in the intensive care unit with three lung infections - her parents were twice told that she would not make it through the night.

Jessica’s mum, Mandy, said: “By some miracle Jess made it through the other side, but she was in a coma for three weeks.

“When she came out of it she couldn’t even lift her head and had to learn everything again, eating, drinking and walking using a zimmer frame.

“This trip to Disney has helped take our minds off the past two years. It’s been absolutely brilliant, making us all smile and giving us different scenery instead of the four walls of the hospital. Jess has been smiling and jumping for joy all weekend.”

And with Jessica’s chemotherapy set to finish on December 2, she and her family are backing the the UK’s biggest ever blood cancer awareness campaign.

Mandy said: “Our world fell apart the evening Jess was diagnosed. We didn’t know anything about blood cancer and we didn’t know what to do or where to turn to. Organisations like Bloodwise are so important because they offer support to those going through such a difficult time in their lives. They are a lifeline to everyone affected by blood cancer.”