A young mum from York has pledged to "start living" her life after overcoming life-threatening sepsis.

Casey Brett, 23, from South Bank, was struck down with the serious condition after developing a form of inflammation while breastfeeding.

But now she says she has a new outlook on life - which includes taking on challenges - and she is starting with the London Marathon.

Casey has two children with her partner Chris Sykes-Waller - three-year-old son Flynn and seven-month-old daughter Mabel.

Currently on maternity leave, Casey works as a shift manager at McDonald's and also runs a cake business.

Whilst travelling to a family wedding in Cardiff, Casey felt some pain when breastfeeding Mabel, who was then four weeks old. Initially, the pain turned into mastitis, a form of inflammation of the breasts common among breastfeeding women.

Casey was admitted to hospital but developed sepsis, a reaction to infection which is often life-threatening.

York Press: Casey in hospital in Cardiff battling sepsisCasey in hospital in Cardiff battling sepsis (Image: Casey Brett)

Casey said: "I was really poorly, it was really scary."

She then spent a week in the hospital before her mum drove down to Cardiff and brought her back to York.

Spurred by her experiences in hospital, Casey decided to enter this year's London Marathon and raise money for Make-A-Wish UK.

She said: "It's been on my bucket list for quite some time.

"I need to start living my life now."

Despite positive steps, Casey reflected on her experiences in hospital and the impact it's had on her life. She said: "I'm doing better now, I still get a bit of anxiety about my health.

York Press: Mother Casey Brett (top left), father Chris Sykes-Waller (top right), 7-month-old daughter Mabel (bottom left) and three-year-old son, Flynn (bottom right)Mother Casey Brett (top left), father Chris Sykes-Waller (top right), 7-month-old daughter Mabel (bottom left) and three-year-old son, Flynn (bottom right) (Image: Casey Brett)

"Now if I think something's wrong I can stick up for myself,

"I've also learnt to trust I know my kids and I know their health as well as mine."

Buoyed by the upcoming marathon in April, Casey said: "It's something that I never thought I'd be able to do.

"I've never ran in my life, but it's a once in a lifetime opportunity."


Raising money for Make-A-Wish UK, Casey has planned a fundraiser at The Quakerwood Pub in Acomb, on January 27. The afternoon children's disco, karaoke and raffle will all be put on to support the charity and Casey's marathon hopes. There will also be special guests in attendance to entertain the kids.

Life after the marathon will continue to change for Casey, and she hopes to work in the ambulance service after completing her driving test.

Donations to Casey's fundraising efforts can be found on her JustGiving page here, or online at the page titled "Casey's London Marathon 2024 - Charity Place fundraising page".