Tragic mum Claire shows why our campaign is so vital Aug 9. 2011 | Comments (2)
Michele Brackley, 44, from Liverpool, contacted love it! magazine after hearing about Hannah’s campaign to cut the age of routine cervical smears. She tragically lost her 23-year-old daughter, Claire, in 2009. Her beautiful girl left a loving boyfriend and two gorgeous daughters – Megan, now seven, and Millie, now three.
Claire had suffered regular water infections and bleeding during her second pregnancy, but had been reassured that everything was fine. After her daughter was born, she was still bleeding, so she saw a kidney specialist who confirmed her kidneys were healthy, but urged her to see a gynaecologist.
This resulted in an emergency operation, where surgeons found an 8cm tumour on her cervix.
Over the following months, she had chemotherapy and radiotherapy, and when the cancer spread, she had an op to remove her bladder, urethra, rectum and anus.
But despite all the attempts to save her, she died just 14 months after the cancer was diagnosed.
Michele says: ‘I know if she’d had a smear after her first daughter was born, something abnormal would have shown up and she might still be with us today.
‘It’s why I really want everyone to get behind this campaign and for the government to listen to the women of this country. My Claire was told that she was too young for a smear, but the heartbreaking truth is she wasn’t too young for cervical cancer.’
Michele is now bringing up Claire’s girls. But as they grow older, it will inevitably be hard for them to accept the cruel fact that a routine test could have saved their brave and beautiful mummy.
That’s why your support for this campaign is so important.