Family makes bucket list for baby girl with terminal illness

Zailynn Mars suffers from spinal muscular atrophy and has just two years to live Credit: Cory Mars/Facebook

A family has created a bucket list for their baby girl after she was given just two years to live.

Zailynn Mars was diagnosed with severe spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) when she was three months old. Doctors predict that she will only survive for two years.

Parents Cory and Katie Mars, from the US state of Wisconsin, have vowed to pack as much experience as they can into her limited lifespan. They have started ticking off a bucket list for Zailynn, which includes going to Disneyland and making a snow angel.

The family have vowed to make the most of whatever time Zailynn has left Credit: Cory Mars/Facebook

“As a father to a little girl, it’s heartbreaking,” Cory told American T.V station WBAY-TV2.

“We’re making the best of the situation as possible and making her as comfortable as possible,” he added.

The bucket list has 51 activities with a number of things already ticked off - including walking down the aisle with her dad and drawing her name in the sand.

These are some of the things on Zailynn's bucket list:

  • Visit the ocean

  • Build a snow man

  • Go to a concert

  • Sing karaoke with daddy

  • Hang out with a ninja

  • Go to a movie

  • Go to prom and have pictures taken

  • Paint a picture

  • Play in the leaves

  • Bake cookies

  • Get pictures taken in mom’s wedding dress

Also high up on the list is to be a guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show to help raise awareness about SMA.

SMA is a rare condition, affecting about one in 6,000 babies with around one in 40 people carrying the gene that causes it.

The genetic disorder causes the loss of motor neurons in the spinal cord and brain, affecting the control of muscle movement.

Some types of SMA can lead to less severe complications and many people can reach normal life expectancies. But for Zailynn, diagnosed with severe Type 1, nerve loss will eventually cause the muscles used for breathing and swallowing to waste away.

Zailynn's Go Fund Me page has raised over $11,000 (£7,300) Credit: Cory Mars/Go Fund Me

The Mars family is raising awareness and funds for Zailynn’s treatment on their Go Fund Me page.