A MAN who was crippled by a devastating stroke just days after becoming a dad is being inspired to walk and talk again - by his baby daughter.
Mark Ellis, 23, was rushed to hospital after collapsing at work last August and his shocked wife Amy, 31, was told he was unlikely to live.
He pulled through although the family had to move to a bungalow and Amy had to give up her hairdressing job to look after her disabled husband and Lola-Rose, one.
But now Mark is being inspired by the tot to speak and walk again. His speech therapist has encouraged him to make similar noises to her in a bid to communicate.
He is also taking one step at a time together with her as they both learn to walk. Mark can walk 20 paces with a frame and Lola-Rose can manage 10 before toppling over.
Amy, who met her sales assistant husband in her salon six years ago, said: “Every day Mark makes progress even if it’s a small step, and a lot of it is down to Lola-Rose. She is so active, bright and smiley and never shuts up.
“Mark can walk 20 steps using his frame and she walks unsteadily alongside him - it’s wonderful to see. There’s such a bond between them.
“His speech therapist has also told him to try to make similar noises to Lola-Rose as she starts to speak. So far she can say ‘yes, ‘no’, ‘mum’ and ‘dad’. The therapist says Mark needs to concentrate on how she forms the words and copy her.”
Mark, from Chesterfield, who spent seven months being treated in the Royal Hallamshire Hospital in Sheffield, communicates with the aid of a mobile phone app which vocalises text messages.
He said: “My body felt empty in hospital, I couldn’t move at all. But my wife and especially my daughter came to see me every day and I wanted to be able to do more. A year on I am starting to see a difference. Lola-Rose has been there from the beginning and I’m so grateful for how she is with me, I feel like a proper daddy now.
“She always comes to greet me in a morning and waves to me no matter what I’m doing, and we laugh together. I know I am so lucky to have her and my wife - I love them more and more every day.”