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Couple bring wedding forward after groom given devastating diagnosis following ‘drop foot difficulties’

A couple brought their wedding forward after a devastating diagnosis was given following “drop foot difficulties.”

Steve Kennett, from Ellesmere Port, was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease (MND) in January this year. The 57-year-old had suffered long term back problems and had spinal fusion 20 years ago.

When Steve began having drop foot difficulties the couple thought it was linked to his back problems, but it was linked to MND. Steve and his partner Byron Schofield had plans for a wedding in Spain but these were dashed by the devastating medical diagnosis, reports CheshireLive.

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But the couple refuse to be beaten by the news and have now celebrated their love with a fun-filled marriage ceremony in Chester. Byron, 38, said: “It was a day of life and laughter. We had planned to marry in Sitges which is 20 minutes down the coast from Barcelona where we have many friends.

“We had thought of doing this in a year or two but following Steve’s diagnosis we decided to do it sooner rather than later.”

Doctors told Steve, after a battery of tests, that he has Motor Neurone Disease following a year of symptoms. He is now on medication but there is no cure for this cruel terminal illness.

Byron continued: “He was diagnosed in January this year. It was a hell of a shock, though we knew it could be MND. Steve has had long term back problems and had spinal fusion 20 years ago. When he began with drop foot difficulties we thought it could be linked to this but no.”

Byron and Steve with their 22 guests on their wedding day in Chester

The couple who first met at a mutual friend’s art exhibition in Manchester. Byron said: “He sat opposite me and passed me a Love Heart which said, ‘hey boy’ and raised his eyebrows. I thought ‘he’s into me, he’s gay'”. That was nine years ago and I was living in Manchester.

“We decided we would give it a year and then we decided to live together and I moved in with him at his home in Ellesmere Port.”

Steve was a plant operator for Thomas Plant Hire driving huge diggers and involved in work including sea defenses at Blackpool. After his health began to fail the firm let him work from their offices and then from home but he sadly retired in February.

Byron used to work at Legoland in Manchester but is now a teaching assistant in a primary school as well as being Steve’s primary carer. He said: “We got married at Chester Register Office last month with 22 guests, including both our parents followed by a reception at Pesto at The Yacht in Chester..

“It may not have been the wedding we were going to have with a greater number of guests but it was no lesser a wedding and was still the most gorgeous day.

“We wanted to tell our story to help raise awareness of MND and encourage people to support the Association’s fund raising efforts to provide assistance for those living with the disease and for research into a cure.”

Anyone interested in finding out more information can go on line to https://mndawirral.org.

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