Lee Rigby's son lost the ability to talk after his dad's horrific murder
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Lee Rigby's son has revealed he once lost the ability to talk after his dad's horrific murder.
Jack Rigby, 12, endured the devastating loss of his father at just two years old when the horrific killing on May 22, 2013 devastated the nation.
Now a decade on from his Fusilier father being murdered by outside his barracks in Woolwich, South East London, little Jack has opened up as to how he has coped with the grief and mourning the untimely loss of his dad.
Jack was a mere toddler the day he attended his father Rigby's military funeral, which took place in Greater Manchester's Bury Parish Church on 12 July, 2013.
The service was attended by thousands of people, including the prime minister at the time, David Cameron, alongside the former Mayor of London, Boris Johnson.
The child was made to grow up without his dad and has had to understand, at his very young age, the horrific details surrounding how his father lost his life.
Rigby, who joined the armed forces back in 2006, was deployed to Afghanistan in 2009 and was brutally killed in the street aged just 25-years-old by Islamist extremists Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale.
During this period, Rigby was working in a recruitment post under the 2nd Battalion the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers.
The two men subsequently received life sentences, with leader Adebolajo facing a whole-life tariff.
Jack, just a tot at the time, was left completely traumatised by the tragic ordeal and went on to suffer later-in-life trauma responses to the life-changing event and even lost the power of speech for a few months, regressing back to babyhood.
Now, as the tenth anniversary of Rigby's death nears, Jack is now speaking publicly for the first time about his father.
He is currently walking and running a marathon over the course of a month for the charity Scotty’s Little Soldiers charity, which supports bereaved military children and young people.
Opening up about how he is faring, Jack told The Mirror: "I want to raise £1,000 for every year my dad has been gone and would absolutely love to raise £10,000 for the 10-year anniversary.
"I feel proud doing the May Marathon in honour of my dad. It also helps distract me from everything. Going on a long walk is a nice break and reminds me it’s not all bad."
Jack's mum, Rebecca, added: "People think because Jack was only two when his dad was killed, that it doesn’t affect him very much, but that’s not how it works.
"Just because Jack was young, it doesn’t mean he’s forgotten Lee. Lee has always been such an important part of our lives and always will be. I’m so proud of Jack in everything that he does, and I think that Lee would be as well."
The widow went on to explain: "Jack wanted to do something positive in memory of his dad. He wants to show how even though he’s grown up without Lee, he’s not forgotten his dad."
Speaking of Rigby's killers, the bereft mother resolved: "These people have taken away my baby’s dad, but Lee’s memory lives on through our son and we will never forget him.
"I now want to build a future for Jack and make him proud of his dad like we all are."