Dan Walker and Sally Nugent laugh about garden gnomes

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BBC Breakfast presenters Sally Nugent and Dan Walker opened up to viewers about their colleague Deborah James’ battle with terminal bowel cancer. Deborah, who presents You, Me and the Big C podcast, recently shared a heartbreaking announcement with her social media followers explaining she has moved to “hospice-at-home” care. Sally held back tears as she and Dan discussed the emotional social media post.

Turning to Sally, he noted: “We’ve spent quite a bit of time with her on this programme and people feel they know her really well and to hear that, even though you know she’s been ill for such a long time, and she’s spoken a lot about what will happen to her eventually, it’s that shock moment of it happening now.”

Sally, who was struggling to fight back tears, added: “As she said, it’s the post she didn’t want to write.

“But in her post, she talked about raising funds didn’t she and research into bowel cancer and they are currently, the fund she started, right now I can tell you is £650,000.”

“It’s called the Bowel Babe Fund and she has actually updated her social media this morning and said, ‘I never in my wildest dreams thought I’d be waking up to this total 12 hours later, I’m actually crying because I know we can continue to help some very vital projects,’” Dan read out.

Later in the programme, the pair touched on Deborah’s diagnosis once again, with Dan commenting: “Now, many of you will know Deborah James.

“She is the presenter of You, Me and the Big C podcast and she’s been on this programme many times as well.
“We have been fortunate enough to have her not only on the sofa but during the pandemic we spoke to her on numerous occasions, didn’t we?”

“Sadly, Deborah, who was diagnosed with bowel cancer five years ago, shared a message on her Instagram account yesterday saying she’s now been moved to hospice-at-home care,” Sally added.

The host read out Deborah’s message and it was clear she was struggling not to cry as Dan took over presenting duties.

More to follow…

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