Samantha Womack is battling breast cancer.
The former 'EastEnders' star took to Twitter to pay tribute to Olivia Newton-John - who fought the disease for 30 years - following her death on Monday (08.08.22) aged 73, and during her heartfelt post Samantha revealed she is starting her own "battle with [the] disease" and has been left feeling "deeply moved" following the 'Grease' star's passing.
Sam shared a picture of herself, Olivia and Olivia's daughter Chloe, 36, after they went to see the 'Mount Pleasant' actress when she was playing Sandy - Olivia's character' in the 1978 movie - in the West End.
She captioned the image: "This was the most magical of evenings. Olivia and Chloe had come to see Grease in London and we had dinner together afterwards. I was so excited and in awe, she was my childhood. I now start my own battle with this disease and am left feeling deeply moved. #OliviaNewtonJohn (sic)"
The star - who played Ronnie Mitchell in 'EastEnders' from 2007 to 2017 - is "proud" that she is able to speak to her ex-husband Mark Womack, who she split from in 2020, "two or three times a day".
She said: "Mark and I raised a family really well, so we agreed that we didn’t mind separating in terms of a traditional marriage, but actually I would really have suffered if we hadn’t maintained a friendship, because that was part of my life for 20 years.
"We speak to each other two or three times a day, Mark will say, ‘Can I pop round next week – can you have the two Chihuahuas?’ and I’ll say, 'Yeah, but can you have the cat next week?' "
Samantha is currently dating former 'Coronation Street’ actor Oliver Farnworth, 39, and the pair live together in Spain, after relocating to Valencia at the start of the year.
She says Oliver gets on with Mark and has a great relationship with their two kids.
Sam added: "We’re all actors and the kids are in full-time education, it’s a bit manic, so actually we really do need each other.
"Mark and Ollie are really friendly and the kids love having all of us; we’re a blended family. I’ve been parenting Mark’s son Michael since the age of four, so he comes down sometimes with his partner.
"We’ve worked hard at remaining friends and I’m proud of it. I Know for some people that’s not possible when the breakup is just too painful, but we were able to do it and I’m really grateful."