INSPIRATIONAL Deborah James has been left overwhelmed after raising more than £5million for charity.
The hero Sun columnist has raked in more than 16 times her original £250,000 goal for Cancer Research UK.
Deborah, 40, launched the GoFundMe on Monday when she revealed she was on end-of-life care.
Reacting to the milestone, Deborah wrote: “We’re completely lost for words. This is all just beyond anything we could have ever imagined.”
She wrote on Instagram: “The last 5 days have been surreal. Thank you for putting a huge smile on my face, and helping us to launch a legacy to hopefully impact a lifetime cutting edge cancer care.
“Thanks to an incredibly generous donation earlier today, and to every single person who’s donated to the @bowelbabefund, we’ve just reached the unbelievable total of £5m.”
A-listers and royalty touched by the mum-of-two’s story have all donated – helping the page reach well over £5million this evening.
Prince William and Kate Middleton left an undisclosed amount after praising Deborah, who was diagnosed with bowel cancer in 2016.
In a personal tweet, the couple added: “Every now and then, someone captures the heart of the nation with their zest for life & tenacious desire to give back to society.
“@bowelbabe is one of those special people. Her tireless efforts to raise awareness of bowel cancer & end the stigma of treatment are inspiring.
“We are so sad to hear her recent update but pleased to support the @bowelbabef, which will benefit the @royalmarsdenNHS among others.”
While Steve Bland, co-host of the You, Me And The Big C podcast alongside Deborah, also praised the bowel cancer campaigner.
Appearing on BBC Breakfast, he said: “It is amazing, but this is what Deborah does. Deborah deals in the extraordinary. This is what she has done for five years.
“Everyone is focusing on the last five days, but actually Deb has been doing this for five years, ever since she was diagnosed with incurable cancer five years ago, and since then she has just been trying to help people.
“She has been banging the drum over and over and over and over – on bowel cancer symptoms, working hard to get drugs approved that she knew would help her but help loads of other people too.
“While the last five days have been amazing – there are people all over the country walking around enjoying their children’s birthday parties because she has basically saved their lives.”
Determined Deborah reached the £5million milestone on Friday evening – a goal she hoped to achieve by the end of the weekend.
She said: “It’s surpassed all expectations.”
Husband Seb said the outpouring of love, support and donations has been hugely uplifting and heartwarming for the family during “this extremely difficult time”.
He added: “It has brought a piercing ray of light and hope into this, the darkest of times.
“She has campaigned tirelessly, often through adversity, and being recognised with a Damehood is something that she would never have dreamt of, but it is so truly deserved.”
It comes after Deborah was honoured with a Damehood for her “tireless campaigning”.
Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace and No 10 pulled out all the stops to honour the mum of two who has written for The Sun about her treatment and life since being diagnosed.
Prince William is thought to have been the driving force behind the honour.
He worked behind the scenes to make sure that she got her damehood.
The Sun also led calls for her to be recognised.
Deborah told of her shock at being made a Dame saying: “OMFG, this is crazy.”
The brave ex-deputy head added: “I don’t know what to say. I’m blown away and feel incredibly honoured.
“I don’t feel like I deserve this. I can’t tell you what this means to my family, it’s so much to take in.”
Deborah, known to fans as BowelBabe, has shared every step of her journey through her Sun column ‘Things Cancer Made Me Say’ and the ‘You Me and the Big C’ podcast.
In her final column for The Sun Online, she said: “My body just can’t continue anymore. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realise that my last six months have been pretty hellish health wise.
“So I sadly find myself in the place that I never wanted to be — the next crossroads. My body is so emaciated that I have no choice but to surrender to the inevitable.”
But brave Deborah said she always wanted to use her platform in a good way and raised a whopping £2million in just 16 hours after launching her BowelBabe Fund.
She asked supporters to buy her a drink to “see me out this world” by donating the cost of a gin and tonic to the fund.
The Sun columnist said it would raise money for further life-saving cancer research “to give more Deborah’s more time”.
The money will be donated between Cancer Research UK, Bowel Cancer UK and the Royal Marsden.
“I want to raise a pocket of money to go across the three charities which have supported me.
“My cancer didn’t define me but it never went away, we knew it was going to catch me in the end I had to navigate life with it,” she added.
- Deborah has urged people to donate to her fundraiser at bowelbabe.org
Source: The Sun