A woman is taking on the London Marathon for the first time in memory of her nephew who lost a 19-year battle with Cystic Fibrosis.

Jackie Rushbrook, 52, from Maldon said she cried when her selected charity, Make a Wish Foundation told her she would be able to run the race in memory of her nephew, Kristian Long.

He sadly died in June 2013.

She said: “I still do not know if I cried out of relief or if I was scared of what I was about to take on.

“It means an awful lot for me, my sister and her boys that I am able to run the marathon in memory of Kristian.”

Jackie confessed the race was her first experience of long distance running in her life.

It has been a long time dream for Jackie to take on the London Marathon.

Jackie said: “I have wanted to do it for years. Each year I watch and say next I will do it.

“Last year we actually went to watch it and it was an incredible feeling, it is one of those memories that I will always remember.”

Jackie applied to take on the marathon, however, she missed out on the public ballot to take part.

She then was given the opportunity to run in support of the Make a Wish Foundation, who made Kristian’s dream come true and helped him meet with the first team players of Premier League side, Chelsea FC.

The charity allowed for him and his family to visit the stadium in a limousine, watch a match and meet the team in the dressing room after the game.

The family said the day was a ‘life long memory for Kristian’s family to keep forever’.

Jackie said the prospect of the marathon has been “absolutely terrifying”, but three weeks into training she is feeling confident about next year’s race.

She said: “It has been a lot harder than I thought and I thought I was fitter than I am.”

In order to take on the marathon next year, Jackie has to raise £2,000 for Make a Wish Foundation.

Jackie has already got plans for a charity ball which she is hosting at the Braxted Park Estate near Witham on February 1 2019.

The charity ball will be serving up a three-course meal, live music, casino tables, and a host of surprises.

Jackie said: “We also have something else planned which I cannot speak about just yet, but we have a few things up our sleeve for before the marathon.”

The proceeds from the charity ball will all go towards Make a Wish Foundation.

To book your tickets for the event, email info@blackjacketevents.com or call 01206 827883.