Dame Deborah James passed away yesterday after a six-year-long battle with bowel cancer. She was just 40 years old.
Back in May, Deborah revealed that she only had weeks left to live. However, that didn’t stop her from making the most of her final days.
Dame Deborah James’ final days
Deborah was incredibly busy during her final weeks, with achievements and incredible milestones being smashed up until her death.
Perhaps the biggest thing that happened to Deborah before her death was when she received a damehood.
Prince William himself hand-delivered Deborah’s damehood to her at her parents’ home.
The damehood was awarded to the star after she raised millions of pounds for Cancer Research UK.
Prince William later paid tribute to Deborah, branding her “incredible”, and he had been “honoured” to meet her.
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Deborah James’ t-shirt collection
One of the ways in which Deborah helped raise money in her final days was by launching her own t-shirt range.
Her t-shirts, which had ‘Rebellious Hope’ written on them, helped raise even more money for Cancer Research UK.
Deborah James’ memories with family
It wasn’t just charity work that Deborah got involved in during her final days.
She also spent a lot of time with her family too. Back in May, the 40-year-old made “new memories” with her daughter and her friends with a sleepover.
Speaking about the slumber party, Deborah wrote: “I went from staying in my wheelchair to ending up everyone helping to get me into an actually Tee pee to watch Cinderella with the gang and sit there like a 5-year-old with a huge Cheshire Cat smile on my face next to my daughter and sister.”
As well as making memories with her kids, Deborah also attended a number of events in her final weeks despite having end-of-life care.
After her trip to the races, she said: “I find myself living in limbo-land. Not really knowing what the future holds and for how long.
“So despite the unnerving tears, I look at the sunshine, smile, and think, wow, life is a funny thing, isn’t it!! Better enjoy it!”
Deborah also found out that her brother was engaged to his partner before she died, and even managed to celebrate raising a million pounds with her t-shirt range.
Just earlier this week, Tesco pledged £300k to Deborah’s Bowel Babe fund – something she and her family celebrated too.
Her legacy will definitely live on.
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