Emmerdale’s Laura Norton and Mark Jordan ‘heartbroken’ after children diagnosed with rare genetic condition

Emmerdale’s Laura Norton and Mark Jordan (Picture: Instagram/@laura_norts)Emmerdale’s Laura Norton and Mark Jordan (Picture: Instagram/@laura_norts)
Emmerdale’s Laura Norton and Mark Jordan (Picture: Instagram/@laura_norts) | Instagram/@laura_norts
ITV Emmerdale star Laura Norton and her partner Mark Jordan are trying to raise awareness of the rare condition affecting their two children

Emmerdale’s Laura Norton and Mark Jordan have discussed their heartbreak after finding out that both their children have a rare genetic condition.

Laura, 39, who plays Kerry Wyatt in the ITV soap, and her partner Mark, 58, who previously played Daz Spencer, shared the news that their young children have been diagnosed with Usher syndrome.

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The rare genetic condition with no cure affects hearing and night vision - with total loss of hearing and sight in some cases - and can cause issues with balance.

In a recent interview with Hello! Magazine, the couple opened up about the news, with Mark saying: "We’ve agonised about doing this before we’ve even told our children about their condition... we’re going to write them a letter to explain why we did this and show them when they’re old enough to understand."

Mark and Laura met on the set of Emmerdale and got engaged in late 2018, before welcoming their first child, a son called Jesse, who is now two years old.

The couple became parents for a second time in October last year when their daughter Ronnie was born.

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They first became concerned about their son’s health when he failed hearing tests as a baby but didn’t discover Usher syndrome until they were expecting their daughter Ronnie.

It was later revealed by doctors during a medical examination that they are both carriers of the gene which causes the condition.

"Knowing that we’d passed this on to our son was heartbreaking," said Laura, who was told that her children will develop night blindness in their teens before peripheral vision loss and tunnel vision.

"To watch our little boy enjoy the world around him yet know so much will be taken from him was painful."

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Mark is set to lobby MPs in parliament this week about raising awareness of Usher syndrome and campaign for funding.

The soap stars have also become patrons and trustees of the CUREusher to raise awareness and help get funding to find a cure.

Taking to Instagram to spread the world, Laura said: “Our children are incredible. Already thriving in the face of adversity and we will devote ourselves to doing everything in our power to finding treatment and a cure. Trials are ready to go but the condition is so rare and unheard of it doesn’t have the support and funding to move at the rate that it could.

“We’re asking you to please take a minute to look at and follow the charity and become as aware with this condition as you can and we can start a conversation.”

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