Charlene White praises ITV co-star Deborah James for ‘still fighting’ amid ‘final goodbye’
10th May 2022

Deborah James: Lorraine Kelly discusses their 'special bond'

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Deborah James, 40, shared the devastating news yesterday evening that her body “couldn’t continue” and that she was being moved to a hospice. Loose Women star Charlene White, 41, has since taken to Instagram to praise the BBC broadcaster for the work she has done in the cancer field, whilst sharing her sympathies over the tragic news.

But her legacy lives on.

Charlene White

Charlene took to Instagram in view of her 59,100 followers to share a picture of her and Deborah last year when they worked together on a project alongside ITV’s Lorraine Kelly, along with a long-touching message.

She penned: “Last year the incredible @bowelbabe and I worked together on @lorraine’s bowel cancer campaign, and she was just wonderful.

“Incredibly funny, fiercely determined, so warm and charming, and just a brilliant woman to work alongside on something we were both so passionate about.

“We talked about my experiences of growing up with a mum going through cancer treatment, and about her being a parent going through treatment, whilst preparing her children for the inevitable.

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A post shared by Charlene White (@charlenewhite)

“We kept returning to talking about children, about being a child survivor of the trauma that is living through the process of losing a parent.”

Charlene then went on to praise Deborah for the lives she has saved from her work with the bowel cancer charity, Bowel Cancer UK.

She continued: “The work Deborah has done alongside @bowelcanceruk cannot be underestimated. I firmly believe lives have been saved because of her.

“Those mums and dads are still here because of her. That children haven’t had to deal with loss because of her.

“It’s not easy to talk about the realities of living with cancer – but she did it.

“So I’m sending my love to Deborah and her family. The process of finally saying goodbye is just c**p tbh, but she’s surrounded by love. So much love. Love is the thing we can cling to in the throes of grief.

“But her legacy lives on. She’s created @bowelbabefund because, well, despite heading out she wants to make sure she’s still fighting for the lives of others. Deborah, thank-you xx.”

Many social media users took to the post’s comments to share their sympathies and continue to praise Deborah for the work she has done for fellow cancer patients.

Good Morning Britain’s Susanna Reid commented two heart emojis, whilst also retweeting the post on Twitter.

Social media user Bailliescream added: “A perfect tribute to an amazing lady. I’ve been following her for a few years now and I feel so sad today.

“Life can be so unfair at times. Sending so much love to @bowelbabe.”

Empressdestinee commented: “Beautiful tribute Charlene. Deborah’s bravery and her strength are truly amazing. Heartbreaking truly.

“May the Most High give her comfort and her loved ones the strength. Sending love and light.”

Deborah made the sad announcement that there was no longer anything medical professionals could do for her amid her five-year cancer battle.

She explained that she was being moved to hospice at home care, and doesn’t know how long she has left.

Deborah built up an enormous fanbase since she was diagnosed with stage three bowel cancer in 2016, which went on to become stage four, meaning it was incurable.

The BBC podcast host has been the face of the No Butts campaign, shown on ITV’s Lorraine, helping people to spot the signs of bowel cancer early, and has now set up a fund for bowel cancer charities, called the Bowelbabe Fund.

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