British journalist Gary Burgess died on Saturday (1 January) after he was diagnosed with terminal cancer. He was 46.
On Sunday (2 January), ITV confirmed that Burgess had “died peacefully” at a hospice in New Jersey, US where he has lived since 2012.
Burgess was diagnosed with testicular cancer in 1999. He received treatment for tumours in 2015 and 2016.
The broadcaster documented his condition online, posting regular updates about his diagnoses, treatment and recovery on a blog titled Gary’s Chemo Diary.
On 20 November 2020, in a blog post titled “Life and Death”, Burgess revealed that doctors had discovered inoperable tumours on his lungs.
At the time, he wrote: “A half hour video call with my oncologist in Southampton concluded I have a life expectancy of six to 12 months as my cancer is terminal.”
Burgess continued posting diary entries online until 16 December last year. His last entry, “A wonderful Christmas Time”, detailed Burgess’s worsening condition, plans for a quiet Christmas with his husband Alan, and his practice of gratitude.
In a statement to be released after his death, Burgess said: “I’ve had the best life. I’ve had the luckiest life.”
Counting his blessings, the journalist continued: “ I met my soulmate and the love of my life who went on to become my husband. I got to work with some of the most amazing people in newsrooms and studios doing the job I absolutely adore.
“And I’ve been able to share my own relatively short time on this planet surrounded by friends and loved ones who have enriched my life in ways they may never truly understand.”
Gary and Alan Burgess married in 2018, becoming the first couple in New Jersey to convert their civil partnership to marriage after the same-sex marriage law came into effect in the US state.
The couple’s marriage certificate is listed number one on the conversion registry, The Guardian reported.
In a separate statement published by ITV, Alan dedicated a line of dialogue from The West Wing – “being one of Gary’s favourite programmes” – to the memory of his spouse.
“You did a lot of good, Gary. A lot of good.”