Pole dancing teacher dies of cystic fibrosis days after writing bucket list
A young woman has died of cystic fibrosis two days after writing her bucket list.
Kirstie Tancock, 27, became the face of organ donation when she appeared in moving BBC documentary Love on the Transplant List in 2011.
She married partner James on the show, at a time when she was considered to be hours from death.
MORE: Watch: Disabled child walks for the first time in front of cheering classmates
MORE: Burkina Faso looks to wage ‘insurrection against poverty’
Kirstie had a lung transplant operation three weeks after her wedding, but her body sadly rejected the organs after two years.
A second transplant was also unsuccessful, and Kirstie – who had suffered from cystic fibrosis from birth – was told at the start of November that doctors couldn’t do any more.
She died this morning (Thursday) just two days after writing her bucket list, which described a Christmas break with her family as one of her greatest wishes.
Stuart, her husband, said: “I am sorry too say that this morning my beautiful wife and Lyn’s beautiful daughter passed onto a place where she can dance, sing, party and pole as much as she wants. There is also no pain and suffering now.
“Kirstie was one in a million and meant the world and more to so many people. As you know Kirstie is a fighter and fought to the very end. She went peaceful and pain free.
“I can’t express what we and the family are going through currently and hope you understand if we’ve not called you personally.”
He ended by thanking Royal Devon and Exeter and Harefield hospitals, adding “what they have done over the years has been above and beyond and also her two donors who gave her the extra five amazing years with us”.
Kirstie had revealed on her blog that she was too ill to receive a third transplant and the focus now was on making the end of her life as special as possible.
In her penultimate post on November 7 she wrote: “Every song has an ending, every book has to close, my story is coming to it’s finale and I’m here to tell you all just how beautiful it all was.”
She added: “I always wanted to make a difference with my life, leave a positive impact on the earth. I like to think I’ve done that, whether with my cystic fibrosis awareness, organ donation campaigning or the more simple ways of teaching my students love and self worth.”
Kirstie had returned home to Honiton, Devon to spend her final days with her family.
In her final post on November 26 she thanked the hospital staff and carers who had looked after her, before listing the final few things she hoped to do.
These included a lodge break with her family for Christmas, a night in a treetop hotel and a trip to Glasgow with her sister and friends.
Kirstie wrote: “I’ve been making sure that I’m not just watching the world go by and have been arranging lots of special things to do.
“I feel reluctant to organise anything else past then at the moment as I don’t know how long I’ve got, so I’m trying to just take one thing at a time and live every minute – creating memories that will last forever.”