GMB’s Susanna Reid praises ‘glittering diamond’ Deborah James as she urges fans to donate to £6m fund

SUSANNA Reid praised Deborah James as a "glittering diamond", while urging fans to donate to the £6million charity fund.

Dame Deborah, who received the honour on Friday, set up a fundraiser last week when she revealed she was stopping active cancer care.


The beloved mum-of-two said she was moving from hospital to her parents, to spend her last days with her family.

She was diagnosed with stage 4 bowel cancer in 2016, and has since spent much of her time banging the drum for symptom awareness.

The Sun’s columnist urged people to donate to her fundraiser – at bowelbabe.org – after moving to hospice care at home.

And Good Morning Britain's Susanna also encouraged people to donate to the worthy cause, which has capture the heart of the nation.

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She tweeted: "In amongst the darkest of times, @bowelbabe shines like a diamond glittering with love, life, gratitude and purpose.

"My love to Deborah and her family."

Even as the mum stares death in the face, her determination to raise awareness of her rare cancer has not faltered.

The amount skyrocketed hours after Deborah poured her heart out on her final appearance on You, Me and the Big C: Putting the can in cancer.

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'NO REGRETS'

I will die with smile & glass of champers after raising millions, says Deborah

She told how she had made the decision to die at her parent's property for the sake of her children, so they can be spared from constant reminders in their family home.

After reminiscing on her rollercoaster five years following her diagnosis, Deborah said she is now facing the "unknown".

But her unfaltering fans are sure to have made her smile with their extraordinary donations.

She said: "It makes me emotional to see the outpouring of love x."

Last year she celebrated her 40th, and the five-year milestone.

However last summer the drugs that had been keeping her alive — which did not exist for bowel cancer patients when she was first diagnosed — stopped working.

Last Monday, she shared a heartbreaking Instagram post saying she was now receiving end-of-life care at her parents’ home in Woking, Surrey, because the heroic efforts of her team of medics at The Royal Marsden Hospital in South West London were now fruitless.

She said her body “simply isn’t playing ball”, adding: “My body is so emaciated that I have no choice but to surrender to the inevitable.”


What are the symptoms to look for? Remember “BOWEL”

  1. : B:Bleeding

There are several possible causes of bleeding from your bottom, of blood in your poo.

Bright red blood could come from swollen blood vessels, haemorrhoids or piles, in your back passage.

Dark red or black blood could come from your bowel or stomach.

Blood in your stools is one of the key signs of bowel cancer, so it's important to mention it to your doctor so they can investigate.

2. O: Obvious change in loo habits

It's important to tell your GP if you have noticed any changes in your bowel habits, that lasts three weeks or longer.

It's especially important if you have also noticed signs of blood in your poo.

You might notice you need to go to the loo more often, you might have looser stools or feel like you're not going enough or fully emptying your bowels.

Don't be embarrassed, your GP will have heard a lot worse! Speak up and get it checked.

3. W: Weight loss

This is less common than the other symptoms, but an important one to be aware of. If you've lost weight and don't really know why, it's worth mentioning to your GP.

You may not feel like eating, feel sick, bloated and not hungry.

4. E: Extreme tiredness

Bowel cancer that causes bleeding can cause a lack of iron in the body – anaemia. If you develop anaemia you're likely to feel tired and your skin might look pale.

5. L: Lump or pain

As with lots of other forms of cancer, a lump or pain can be a sign of bowel cancer.

It's most likely you'll notice a pain or lump in your stomach or back passage.

See your GP if it doesn't go away, or if it affects how you eat or sleep.

Mum-of-two Deborah was made a Dame last week after calls led by The Sun saw a swift response from Downing Street and Buckingham Palace.

Investiture ceremonies usually take place only at royal palaces and take months to organise.

In an “unprecedented” move, the Duke cleared his diary to do the honours at a tea party at her parents’ home in Woking, Surrey, on Friday.

Mum Deborah, on end-of-life care, told The Sun that Prince William is welcome to join her for tea and Champagne anytime after being awarded her honour in a moving ceremony.

Earlier today her pal Lauren Mahon, who worked on the You, Me and the Big C podcast with Deborah and the late Rachael Bland, appeared on GMB.

The beloved trio came together in 2018 to talk candidly about cancer, having all been diagnosed with the disease.

Lauren said: "It is tough. I'm heartbroken, we are all, everyone who loves Deb is, people who have never met her are.

"But this week has given us pure joy to cling on to, only Deb could do that in the darkest of times. 

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"What she has done in the last five years, let alone this week, is phenomenal. 

"People know the mark she's made and that will live on forever and I couldn't ask for more."

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