Dame Deborah James Tributes Pour In Following The Death Of ‘Bowel Babe’, Aged 40

Tributes have been pouring in for cancer campaigner and podcast host Dame Deborah James following her death at the age of 40.

Dame Deborah, who was known as Bowel Babe online, was diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2016, and in May revealed she was receiving end of life care at her parents’ home in Woking, with her husband Sebastien and their two children on hand.

On Tuesday evening, her family announced she had passed away surrounded by her loved ones.

Dame Deborah James pictured at Royal Ascot on June 15, 2022 in Ascot, England.
Dame Deborah James pictured at Royal Ascot on June 15, 2022 in Ascot, England.

David M. Benett via Getty Images

A statement posted by her family on Instagram said: “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. 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.

“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.’”

Tributes have poured in from stars, including presenter Adele Robertswho was recently given the all-clear following a battle with bowel cancer.

“My heart hurts,” she tweeted.

“Thank you for everything Deborah. Thank you for being so strong for so long and helping others when you were in so much pain yourself.

’You are the best of us. Thinking of your family and friends and I am forever grateful to you for helping me and my family. Rebellious hope forever.”

Many other stars, public figures and organisations also paid their respects to Deborah…

Deborah was known for fronting the podcast You, Me And The Big C, which she co-founded with Lauren Mahon and the late Rachael Bland.

She was awarded a Damehood by the Duke of Cambridge at her home for her “tireless campaigning” efforts in May, after raising millions of pounds for cancer charities.

The campaigner had been increasing awareness of bowel cancer for years and raised more than £6.7 million for Cancer Research UK, Bowel Cancer UK and the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity through her Bowelbabe fund on JustGiving.

Dame Deborah made her last TV appearance in a recent episode of E4’s Embarrassing Bodies, where she encouraged “smashing taboos” associated with bowel movements as it may “save lives” by helping people recognise bowel cancer symptoms.

Recorded when was still in hospital, she said: “We all poo, our favourite celebrities poo! Let’s kind of break down, smash those taboos because quite frankly, that is going to save lives. Let’s spread the word.”

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