IT IS the moment his parents had always dreamed of.
Three years ago Angie Mahon ran through a snow storm to get to hospital to give birth to her twin boys Mykey and Oakley Smith.
When medics diagnosed Oakley with cerebral palsy she and her former partner Terry Smith vowed to do everything they could to help him walk, just like his twin brother.
Now, after readers helped raise £35,000 for an operation in America, they shared the joy of watching him kick a football for the first time.
In a video made by Terry, of Warren Park, little Oakley is filmed gripping on to his walking aids and taking a walk up to score a goal in makeshift posts in the family’s hotel room in St Louis.
His parents whoop and cheer with delight, shouting ‘He did it! Yay!’.
Angie, a 33-year-old mum of four, said: ‘Oakley is progressing very well and getting stronger by the day.
‘We had a slight setback when Oakley caught a sickness bug but he recovered quickly.
‘He is back at physio gaining more muscle strength enabling him to now use his fireman sticks.
‘He can now walk a few steps with these without our help.
‘The physio team at the children’s hospital are outstanding and give Oakley the much-needed encouragement and confidence to keep him working hard.
‘His favourite physiotherapists are Jackie Bryst and Blaire Ballard.
‘They have helped Oakley to come so far since we have been here and made all the hard work so much fun for him, including sliding down fire poles as part of his physio.’
Oakley was born prematurely and has spastic diplegia cerebral palsy.
One of the symptoms is a painful tightness in his legs, so he is unable to walk independently.
The family have one week left to go before they fly home to the twins’ sister Kelsey and brother Bailey.
Friends, family and strangers helped raise the money needed to have the operation.
But the fundraising will continue.
Despite raising the initial cost of the operation and flights, more is needed to pay for intense physiotherapy because it will not be covered by the NHS.
To donate to Oakley’s walking fund, go to justgiving.com/Angela-Mahon.