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Dame Deborah James’ husband Sebastian revealed last night that he kissed his dying wife on the head and told her he loved her before she died of colon cancer.
Her final moments were spent holding the hands of her husband, who stood by her side as she campaigned to raise £7.4 million as she battled the disease she succumbed to on June 28.
‘I kissed her on the head,’ Sebastian said The sun. “I told her how much I loved her, that I would take care of the children, and the last thing I said to her was that I was so proud of her. Then she slipped away.’
The journalist was diagnosed with incurable colon cancer, went on to host You, me and the big C podcast on BBC Radio 5 Live about her struggle with her illness.
In May, the mother of two was given just days to live. But Deborah fought her way through two full months, defying the odds of spending her final weeks with her children and husband from the hospital.
She had an incredibly peaceful death, her husband added.
Dame Deborah James’ husband Sebastian told his terminally ill wife he would “take care of the children” while she was on her deathbed, saying she had an “incredibly peaceful death.”
Deborah is pictured with her 12-year-old daughter Eloise, left. Her father Sebastien says he feels a responsibility to continue his wife’s positive view of their children
Deborah smiles and holds her thumbs up on a final farewell from the hospital, keeping her positive spirit until her last moments
“People who didn’t know Debs saw her grow weaker in those last few weeks,” he said. “But mentally it was the other way around.
Fighting the fires of adversity made her stronger and in my eyes made her more and more radiant by the day. I never loved her again
“She knew what was wrong with her, but she was still able to find those magical moments.”
He said he was impressed with what his wife had accomplished while coping with so much emotional pain.
In the months leading up to her death, Deborah had Prince William on tea, which made her a Lady.
She lived on her own terms despite her illness and designed a clothing line for Charity T-shirts to raise millions more for her ‘Bowelbabe’ fund.
De Dame also wrote and published her second book How to live when you should be dead?while she was suffering from cancer, and how developing a positive mindset was key to enabling her to cope with her diagnosis.
Thinking about what he loved most about her, he said that her way of finding joy in every moment, even in the darkest of times, will make him miss the most.
Deborah’s candid reports about her progress and diagnosis, including videos of her dancing her way through treatment, have been praised by the public and media alike.
Since her diagnosis in December 2016, Deborah has devoted all her efforts to fighting cancer, fighting for battle, raising awareness, and staying open and honest about her own personal experiences.
Now her husband says he feels a responsibility to continue her positive attitude towards their children Hugo (14) and Eloise (12).
The couple first met in 2005 at Cafe de Paris in London and married in France within three years.
The former deputy director often threw great parties for their friends, set up outdoor cinemas for their children or threw himself into all kinds of projects.
Sebastian said lockdown, unlike other circumstances, had been a blessing to their family – allowing them to spend more time together than they would otherwise have found.
Dame Deborah James has visited the stall selling the beautiful bloom, which is breaking sales records, on a special tour outside the opening hours of the Chelsea Flower Show. The cancer campaigner, 40, and her husband Sebastien enjoyed a tour of the show gardens with TV presenter Sophie Raworth
Deborah’s sister and mother as well as her daughter Eloise and nieces surprised her with a sleepover on May 31
Dame Deborah James received a damehood from the Queen, which she received at her home from Prince William on May 13
Deborah and cancer activist Lauren Mahon presented You, Me and the Big C along with breast cancer campaigner Rachael Bland from March 2018 until her death later that year.
Rachael used the podcast as a platform to announce that she only had a few days to live, which sparked a great deal of interest in the program.
Dame Deborah started campaigning on Instagram to raise awareness about colon cancer symptoms before transitioning to TV appearances.
Her co-hosts and producers said she was a “chaotic deviant” with “unwashed hair” who tended to be late, dreamed of working in fashion and used a “Radio 4 voice” when she was in spoke publicly.
Towards the end of her life, she was a regular face on ITV’s Lorraine, successfully campaigning to add colon cancer symptoms to toilet roll packaging.
The team added that while she had a “bubbly” and “lively” personality, she was also a sensitive woman who was driven by changing the world and helping others.
They pondered the small silver linings of her cancer diagnosis, including the fact that she had more time with her children because she was forced to give up her job as a teacher.
Deborah said her cancer diagnosis made her a better mother and took away her fear of the world.
Family friends said her children will take care of Sebastian just as much as he will take care of them after Deborah’s passing.
James’ book caught up with Richard Osman’s mystery novel on Amazon in pre-orders on May 19 after announcing that Peguing had moved their timeline so it could be published in August.