Cancer campaigner Nicky Newman, who was living with incurable stage four breast cancer, has died aged 35.
Newman campaigned to shine the light on the importance of checking your breasts and encouraged her 300,000 Instagram followers to make the most of each day with her catchphrase “Go and grab life”.
In an emotional post shared on Newman’s Instagram account @nicknacklou on Monday (18 September), her husband, who refers to himself as “Mr G” on the platform, told her followers that Newman had passed away.
The post, which was written by Newman pre-emptively before her death, states: “If you’re reading this it means I have died, I made it 5 and half years though, not bad for a stage 4 breastie ey.”
She continued: “And none of this ‘she fought her battle nonsense’, I didn’t lose anything, the cancer eventually took over & that’s okay, we all knew this would happen.
“I don’t think we are ever prepared to hear the words, we think we are indestructible & a magic cure will appear, but the truth is we all live this life day to day (we just knew our days are shorter).”
Despite the sad news, Newman said she wanted to remind her followers to “Go and grab life”.
“So please promise me to cherish those around you and give your friends and loved ones the biggest squeezes! GO GRAB LIFE! You never truly know what is coming around the corner – so don’t take anything for granted.”
In the following Instagram post, Newman’s husband paid tribute to his wife, writing that they had known each other since they were 14 years old and were always “inextricably drawn to each other”.
“A truly rare joining of souls that were simply meant to be one,” he wrote.
Speaking about his wife’s impact as a cancer campaigner, he continued: “She has created a legacy here [on social media], a place where anyone can see that life is for positivity and smiles and happiness. Even through hardship…even if it seems impossible.”
Friends and followers of the campaigner have been sharing tributes on social media, with TV presenter Stacey Solomon writing on Instagram: “Nick. I love you. So grateful I got to meet and know you. Promise to grab life every single day.”
Strictly Come Dancing professional Amy Dowden, who is not competing in this year’s season as she receives treatment for breast cancer, thanked the late cancer campaigner for being a “true inspiration”, and for raising awareness of the disease.
Dowden wrote on Instagram: “The most beautiful ray of sunshine who has done so much and created a community and legacy that will live on.”
She added: “I hope you know all the help and awareness you have done and will always continue to do so. I remember when I found out I needed a port your page I turned too! I will forever hold onto your lovely voice notes and will always think of you when I say Welsh Love.
“I promise to grab life and deeply miss your radiance and positivity X love to Mr G, your family, friends and huge community you created online.”
TV presenter Gaby Roslin also shared a tribute, writing in the comments that Newman “filled the room with such great energy”.
“What a good soul you were. My huge love to your family and your friends. I do hope you knew how much you were loved and adored,” Roslin added.
Newman, who was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2018, had been fundraising for breast cancer charities and raising awareness of the symptoms since her diagnosis. She was praised by her followers for her positive messaging and her frank and honest documentation of her treatment journey on social media.
Last year, Newman raised £45,000 running the Race For Life for Cancer Research UK and routinely encouraged her followers to check their breasts for signs of breast cancer via the charity Coppa Feel.