Husband’s tribute to wife after her battle with cancer
MUCH-LOVED MUM HAD A BABY
TUMOUR THE SIZE OF
A HEARTBROKEN husband described his late wife as “the strongest person you could ever know” after her death from a rare form of cancer.
Ashington mum-of-three Natalie Kerr was diagnosed with the disease last year when doctors found a tumour the size of a baby in her body.
In July we reported how family and friends held an early Christmas for her, so she could celebrate with her loved ones before it was too late.
Now Natalie’s husband Johnny has confirmed she took her last breath on Wednesday, November 25.
Posting on the Facebook page where Natalie chronicled her journey with cancer, he wrote: “It absolutely pains us to let everyone know that my beautiful wife Natalie lost her battle tonight at 8pm.
“She was the strongest person you could know. And showed our kids that it’s not OK to give up ever. I would like to thank everyone for the kindness they showed us and the support was amazing. We have a massive future road to go without her, and my kids will be devastated but we have each other.”
Johnny added: “I would also like to thank Natalie for the life we shared and the things we have done together, I will make sure me and our kids never forget the beautiful inspiration you were. I will love and miss you forever.” The loving mum owned the Natalie Jays cafe in Ashington, Northumberland, but was forced to leave it due to illness.
In May, she told The Chronicle how her ordeal began in 2018, when she started to feel unusually unwell and gained three stones in six weeks. Natalie became very tired, her periods stopped, her blood pressure rose and her body swelled with water retention from head to toe.
But Natalie, 35, said she was told it was “probably due to early menopause or just stress”.
For around eight months she went backwards and forwards to the doctors, eventually being diagnosed with adrenal cancer, one of the rarest forms. Natalie said: “I had the biggest tumour they had ever seen – 14cm by 14cm at that point. This was Halloween night 2019 and instead of having happy times, I had to sit my children down and tell them I had cancer.”
A month later, she went to the Freeman Hospital, in Newcastle, for an operation to remove the tumour, which had grown to 22cm by 22cm. The surgeon told her this was the biggest tumour he had ever seen – it was the size of a baby, around 7lb.
Natalie, mum to Ethan, 15, Jasmine Lilly, 13, and Holly Rose, eight, underwent a 10-hour operation to remove the tumour, right kidney, adrenal gland and gallbladder.
She managed to come home for Christmas and was placed on chemotherapy tablets. This was followed by months of recovery and her learning to walk and sit up freely.
Natalie returned for her sixmonth scan and was told the cancer had returned in her liver and surrounding area. She was also given the devastating news that the cancer was terminal and could not be operated on.
At an early Christmas in July, she said: “I’m overwhelmed and thankful to everybody who’s done this and everybody knows how much I love them – and we are going to have the best night of our lives.”
I would...like to thank Natalie for the life we shared and the things we have done together