Lorraine Kelly fights tears as The Sun’s Deborah James raises over £1million in 24 hours after 'final Instagram post'

LORRAINE Kelly today blinked away tears as she praised friend Deborah James for smashing her fundraising target after her heartbreaking health update.

The former school teacher and presenter of the BBC podcast You, Me And The Big C has been moved to hospice at home care to treat her terminal bowel cancer after five years.

Sun columnist Deborah, 40, shared her final social media update last night, telling her legion of fans: "The tweet I never wanted to write. The time has come to say goodbye."

She urged people to donate to her fundraiser – at bowelbabe.org.

Lorraine, 62, told viewers today: "I know she is watching now, and she wants to say ‘thank you’. She is about to get to £1million, so thank you."

The presenter added: "What she’s doing is asking everyone to buy her a drink.

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"Well you don’t actually do that, but what you do is donate to her Bowel Babe fund.

"I’ve been looking at this all morning, and it’s really cheered me up.

"It’s astonishing it really is. I think she’ll definitely get to a million, fingers crossed.

"We’ll never know how many lives she saved."

Lorraine had visited Deborah in hospital and had believed she would bounce back as she always did.

The presenter added: "The only thing is she always bounced back. Recently I went to see her in the hospital and she was really thin.

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"But she was Deborah. She was making everyone laugh, I just thought, ‘she’ll bounce back'."

Deborah revealed the last six months had been "heartbreaking" to go through as she shared her final Instagram and Twitter posts.

But she said that she has been surrounded by "so much love" and had "no regrets".

She was diagnosed with the condition in 2016 and since then has kept her nearly 300,000 Instagram followers up to date with her treatments, with candid posts about her progress and diagnosis.

On December 14 2021, she marked five years since her diagnosis, writing on Instagram: "I'm fully aware I shouldn't be alive to write this today."

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But in a new post on Monday, she said: "The message I never wanted to write. We have tried everything, but my body simply isn't playing ball.

"My active care has stopped and I am now moved to hospice at home care, with my incredible family all around me and the focus is on making sure I'm not in pain and spending time with them.

"Nobody knows how long I've got left but I'm not able to walk, I'm sleeping most of the days, and most things I took for granted are pipe dreams."

She added that she had left "no stone unturned" in search of treatment, but that even a "magic new breakthrough" would not make a difference.

Sharing links to charities including Cancer Research UK, Bowel Cancer UK and the Royal Marsden Cancer Charity, she asked supporters to make donations and "buy me a drink to see me out this world".

She added: "Right now for me it's all about taking it a day at a time, step by step and being grateful for another sunrise.

"My whole family are around me and we will dance through this together, sunbathing and laughing (I'll cry!!) at every possible moment!

"You are all incredible, thank you for playing your part in my journey.
"No regrets. Enjoy life x Deborah."

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