Her blog moved thousands of men and women across the globe – but sadly, last month Ellie Jeffery’s story came to an end. She bravely fought cancer for three years, determined to end that she would do what doctors said was impossible: beat the disease that was threatening to end her life. But, last month and just three weeks before her wedding day to fiancé Tom Thostrup, Ellie passed away.
Ellie, a journalist who wrote for Grazia when she was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 2009, became an instant internet hit when she began her frank and honest blog, writtenoff.net. ‘At 28 I was diagnosed with secondary breast cancer that had spread to my lungs, liver and bones,’ she tells her readers in her first post. ‘I was given months to live by my doctor. It sounds grim but what I hope to prove in my blog is that doctors aren’t always right and that you can live a relatively normal, dare I say fabulous, life despite having cancer.’
She detailed every notion and feeling to her many online followers right through her treatment, bringing hope to many and inspiring the courage to stand up to cancer in others as well as raising thousands of pounds for charity. But despite her gritty determination, it wasn’t to be. Ellie posted her last blog in April this year – but, heartbreakingly, it was up to Tom, 35, to write the final piece, entitled ‘The post I never wanted to write’. Below it, he posted the groom’s speech that Ellie should have heard on her beautiful wedding day.
Speaking exclusively Grazia this week, Ellie’s fiancé Tom said: ‘Ellie never gave up. In her mind – and mine – that just wasn’t an option. And even when she was in pain or feeling down, she was still always thinking of others. She couldn’t help it, and it made me love her even more.
‘Now, I want to create a legacy for Ellie that she would be proud of – I’m going to publish her blog, as well as raising money for charities she loved in her name.
‘I miss everything about her, but I know that Ellie and I will be inextricably entwined. She’ll always be with me.’
To donate to Ellie’s fund, please visit: mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/ellieactionagainstcancer
Read the full interview with Tom in this week’s Grazia – out now.