Happy birthday to miracle boy Reggie as Whitchurch community rallies round
Little Reggie Cox celebrated his fourth birthday in style after his mother asked the community in Whitchurch for help in organising a drive-by of classic vehicles for his big day.
Reggie was born prematurely and now suffers from a chronic lung disease and has sensory processing disorder, so lockdown has been hard on him and his family.
Despite his young age, Reggie has endured a challenging life so far, with complications after his premature birth.
At four, he is in the same size clothes as his little sister, who is 20-months-old.
His parents, Mikaela and Dave Cox, wanted to make sure they celebrated Reggie’s birthday in a special way and so Mikaela asked the Friends of Whitchurch Facebook page for help.
“I asked if anyone with any kind of vehicle could drive past our house or somewhere we could safely take him to see anything,” she explained.
“We had 121 comments when I posted it on Facebook, and people also private messaged me. We didn’t expect that kind of reaction.”
Reggie was born at just 24 weeks, 16 weeks before he was supposed to. The chances for survival for a baby born at 22 weeks is around 10 per cent and at 24 weeks is around 60 per cent.
Mikaela said: “I went into labour at 23 weeks and was told it was a miscarriage and we had to wait for it to pass. The next day another doctor came and said they were going to double check and I’m so glad he came along. He said if the baby was more than 500 grams they would try and save it – Reggie was over 600.
"So he was in hospital for four months after. Even when he came home he was on oxygen until he was a year old. Now he has chronic lung disease, so he gets ill quicker.
"He also has sensory processing disorder, so he has to touch everything.Lockdown has been difficult as we have had to shield for five months.”
Reggie was joined on his birthday by vintage motorbikes, classic cars, a fire engine and even had a special drive in a vintage tractor around town.
Mikaela said she is so grateful for the community’s help.
The mother of two is also taking part in a 100km trek across the Sahara desert next November in aid of The Sick Children’s Trust. as a way of saying thank you for helping when Reggie was younger.
She explained: “We lived in London when we had Reggie and lived about an hour from the hospital,” Mikaela said. “So we travelled in everyday from our flat and he got better after he was born.
“Then Reggie had to have a routine operation on a hernia, and another operation a day later. So two days in a row of operations. It was a very scary time, we nearly lost him.
“My phone was on silent one night and I woke up to calls saying we need to wait and see what happens. While we were there The Sick Children’s Trust offered us a room. I was hesitant but we looked round and it was amazing, we’re so grateful for their support. We stayed there for two weeks while he was in hospital. It was a home from home.”
To donate to Mikaela’s fundraiser, visit justgiving.com/fundraising/Reggies-journey