Wearing a ReWalk suit, paraplegic Claire Lomas walked the entire London Marathon in 16 days.
Claire Lomas may not have been the fastest person to cross the finish line at the London Marathon, but she probably scored the biggest round of applause.
Lomas was paralyzed from the chest down in 2007, after a horse-riding accident. She was told that she would never walk again.
In January, that changed—thanks to the purchase of a $75,000 bionic suit known as the ReWalk, which we’ve written about before. The suit is fully weight-bearing, and automatically moves her forward when she shifts her weight. Despite the advanced technology, it still wasn’t an easy transition for Lomas to learn to move in her suit: At the start, she could only take 30 steps.
She had bigger goals, though. Lomas decided to set out to walk the entire length of the London Marathon. Her husband Dan stayed with her every step of the way.
It took her 16 days to complete the track, but on May 8th, she stepped across the finish line to the applause of thousands of cheering fans, including her daughter, 15-month-old Mazie.
“It’s a moment I’m going to treasure for the rest of my life,” Lomas told the BBC. She was shocked to see how many people had come out to support her: “I couldn’t believe it when I turned up this morning in the taxi to start, and I thought it was just a busy day in London. Someone told me they’re all there for me. I was like, no!”
In addition to inspiring millions, Lomas completed another impressive feat: Her walk raised more than £145,000 for spinal cord research. To give her your support, visit her JustGiving page.