Dying eight-year-old 'marries' his school sweetheart
An eight-year-old boy who had set his heart on 'marrying' his school sweetheart achieved his final wish the day before he died of leukaemia.
By Laura Clout
Last Updated: 8:22AM BST 22 Jul 2008
Given only weeks to live, Reece Fleming proposed to his 'special friend' Elleanor Purgslove at a laser tag party.
After she accepted, their parents arranged a make-believe wedding at Reece's home in Mackworth, Derby. He died the next day with his family.
Reece's mother Lorraine Fleming said he told her, "I can go now" after his wish had been granted.
The 28-year-old said: ""He was so proud of her, and we were proud of them both."
Reece was diagnosed with leukaemia in July 2004, when he was aged just four.
He fought the disease for four years until May when doctors told him he had just weeks to live.
Ms Fleming, said she and his stepfather Mick Thompson had tried to help him achieve as much as possible before his death, including marrying his sweetheart.
"When we found out that we only had a few weeks with him we tried to do absolutely everything with him that we could.
"Him and Ellie had been 'special friends' for a couple of years but then they broke up.
"We said we'd have a pirate party, and Ellie came. She went to visit Reece a few times in hospital as well.
She added: "We also had a football and laser quest party, apparently that's when he proposed to her."
The pair went out to dinner in the mayor's limousine and the families organised a 'wedding', complete with rings, a stand-in vicar and a certificate.