AceShowbiz - Prince William and Kate Middleton are mourning Deborah James' death. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have paid tribute to "unfalteringly brave" cancer campaigner and podcaster following her death.
Deborah, who was mother to Hugo, 14, and Eloise, 12, with husband Sebastien Bowen, sadly lost her battle with bowel cancer on Tuesday, June 28 at the age of 40 and Prince William and Kate have sent a personal message following the "heartbreaking" news.
They wrote on Instagram, "We are so sad to hear the heartbreaking news about Dame Deborah. Our thoughts are with her children, her family and her loved ones. Deborah was an inspirational and unfalteringly brave woman whose legacy will live on. W C."
Deborah, who was nicknamed "BowelBabe", left some final words of advice for her fans, which were shared by her family in a statement announcing her death. The statement read, "We are deeply saddened to announce the death of Dame Deborah James; the most amazing wife, daughter, sister, mummy. Deborah passed away peacefully today, surrounded by her family."
"Deborah, who many of you will know as Bowelbabe, was an inspiration and we are incredibly proud of her and her work and commitment to charitable campaigning, fundraising and her endless efforts to raise awareness of cancer that touched so many lives," the statement added. "Deborah shared her experience with the world to raise awareness, break down barriers, challenge taboos and change the conversation around cancer. Even in her most challenging moments, her determination to raise money and awareness was inspiring."
"We thank you for giving us time in private as a family, and we look forward to continuing Deborah's legacy long into the future through the @bowelbabefund. Thank you for playing your part in her journey, you are all incredible," it continued, alongside a picture of Deborah in a white dress posing in front of a gorgeous sunset. "And a few final things from Deborah... 'find a life worth enjoying; take risks; love deeply; have no regrets; and always, always have rebellious hope. And finally, check your poo – it could just save your life.' (Shared with Deborah's permission)."
Last month, Prince William personally presented Deborah with her Damehood when he joined her and her family for afternoon tea in her garden, days after she announced she had been put on end-of-life care and didn't know "how long" she had left.
At the time, the "You, Me and the Big C" podcaster wrote on Instagram, "Prince William actually came to our family house today!! I am utterly honored that he joined us for afternoon tea and champagne, where he not only spent a generous amount of time talking to my whole family but also honored me with my Damehood."
"It's quite surreal having a royal pop in at home, and yes you can imagine the cleaning antics and preparation went off the scale, but it was all irrelevant because William was so kind and he put us all at ease," she added.