Footy WAG Bec Judd paid tribute to a close friend who passed away from cancer.
Mother of one Nicole Cooper was diagnosed with stage 4 bowel cancer in March 2017, shortly after giving birth to her son Joshua, and died in Melbourne on Tuesday. She was 38.
Bec, who is vacationing with her family in Whistler, Canada, said Wednesday she was “so privileged” to have shared “so many great times” with her friend.
Footy WAG Bec Judd (right) paid tribute to a close friend who passed away from cancer. Mother-of-one Nicole Cooper (centre left) was diagnosed with stage 4 bowel cancer in March 2017, shortly after giving birth to her son Joshua, and died in Melbourne on Tuesday. She was 38
Commenting on Nicole’s latest Instagram post, which she wrote hours before her death, Bec wrote, “Oh, Nic. The bravest, most inspiring person I know. I stand with you and will love your family forever, just like you.”
She then took to her own Instagram page to share photos of the pair together.
Heaven has a queen. Rest in peace, my love. I am so proud to be your friend and so privileged to have shared so many great times with you,” she wrote.
“I’ll open my arms and hug Josh tight, just like you would for the next few days. RIP @nicolecoopy.’
She was open about her battle with cancer and inspired thousands of people who suffered from the disease
Bec also shared a video of the snowy mountains of Whistler, where she is on a skiing vacation with her husband, Chris Judd, and their four children.
“Waking up to this view and thinking of my beautiful friend Nicole Cooper who really wanted to be on this Whistler trip to look at the same outlet every day,” she wrote.
RIP, Nick. I will always love you.’
Bec, 39, who is vacationing with her family in Whistler, Canada, said on Wednesday she was “so privileged to have shared so many great times” with her friend
In the hours before her death, Nicole wrote a heartbreaking final message that was later posted to her Instagram by her family.
Alongside a photo from her hospital bed with her son Josh and husband Tim, she wrote, “When it comes to packing, cancer is not something I want to sign up for.”
She added that the “stuff that matters” is “what we built together.”
“The shared respect, the joy, the compelling and insightful dedication and unwavering authenticity to the real nuts and bolts of life,” she added.
In the hours before her death, Nicole wrote a heartbreaking final message that was later posted to her Instagram by her family. The post featured this photo from her hospital bed of Nicole with her husband and son
“It’s the fragility of this, the incomparable everythingness, the willingness to take any risk for this group, to truly declare that living my most frightened and vulnerable and weak and wonderful life was all worth it.”
‘Because I have to do it with all of you. That’s the purpose of things. I conclude with that.
“And that’s what I know you’re all just starting to defend for us, for every day, forever.”
COLON CANCER: WHAT ARE THE WARNING SIGNS?
Colon or colorectal cancer affects the colon, which consists of the colon and rectum.
Such tumors usually develop from cancer precursors called polyps.
- Bleeding from below
- Blood in stool
- A change in bowel habits that lasts for at least three weeks
- Unexplained weight loss
- Extreme, unexplained fatigue
- Stomach ache
Most cases have no clear cause, but people are more at risk if they:
- Are over 50
- Have a family history of the condition
- Have a personal history of polyps in their gut
- Suffer from inflammatory bowel disease, such as Crohn’s disease
- Lead an unhealthy lifestyle
Treatment usually includes surgery and chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
More than nine in ten people with stage 1 colon cancer survive five years or more after their diagnosis.
Unfortunately, only about a third of all colorectal cancers are diagnosed at this early stage.
The majority of people come to the doctor when the disease has spread beyond the wall of the colon or rectum or to distant parts of the body, decreasing the chances of successfully curing colon cancer.
According to figures from Bowel Cancer UK, more than 41,200 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer each year in the UK.
It affects about 40 per 100,000 adults each year in the US, according to the National Cancer Institute.
The Melbourne-based mum had publicly documented her cancer journey on Instagram and ran her own podcast, The Impatient Podcast.
She devoted much of her blog to raising awareness around the disease.
‘I am a young, healthy, active woman. I like kale. I like the gym. Don’t assume you’re not in the risk zone,” she wrote on her blog in 2017.
Anyone can get colon cancer. You are never too young, old, fit, healthy or invincible.’
She added that she “hadn’t thought much about her symptoms” because of her work schedule and fatigue from taking care of her son.
Her last post was emotionally charged and full of love for her family, who are pictured here in her final days
“I had lost weight quickly, but I was breastfeeding at the time and a lot of people said I looked great and I was so lucky,” she explained.
“I was also extremely tired—quite understandable as a new mother.”
On Jan. 4, she posted a photo of her “oxygen friend” — a tank — and reflected on a week of ICU craziness and terrifying moments.
Bec said heaven had “won a queen” as she shared photos of the friends together
“But one of the benefits of a week of total disorientation is the opportunity to then take a mindful step in any direction and essentially move toward some version of moving forward,” she said.
That determination to get better led her followers to praise her for her resilience and optimism.
But unfortunately things got worse and six days later she wrote her last message and spent time with her family, who broke into her room to say goodbye.
Her death left her community devastated.
Bec shared photos of the group of friends in happier times