A brother and sister have opened up about the cruel twist of fate that saw them both lose their partners to the same rare and debilitating disease.
Brian Sackett, from Sturry, lost his wife Diane to motor neurone disease (MND), three years after she was diagnosed with the terminal condition.
The grieving great-grandfather, left devastated by her death in 2009, was supported by his sister Hilary Smith, also from Canterbury.
But in what was a bitter and unexpected blow to the family, Mrs Smith lost her husband Colin last year to the same terrible disease, which develops in just two people in every 100,000 each year in the UK.
The siblings are sharing their heartbreaking accounts ahead of a walk in October, which they are holding to raise money for the East Kent group of the Motor Neurone Disease Association (MNDA) for it’s 40th anniversary.
They admit for a family to lose two people to the same horrific condition is particularly hard to bear.
Mrs Smith said: “Being told in June 2017, after many months of struggling with Colin’s health, that the diagnosis was motor neurone disease was unbelievable.
“Having watched Diane endure the same horrid disease and eventually pass away 10 years ago, I just thought it couldn’t strike our family again. How wrong was I?”