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Celeb News

Remembering brave Jane McGrath 10 years on

She was the loving wife and mother who inspired a generation of Australians with her selfless work, and continues to do so a decade after she lost her battle.

Jane McGrath was just 31 and bubbling over with love and excitement as she prepared to marry Aussie cricket star Glenn McGrath 
– before her life changed forever when she found a pea-sized lump in her left breast in 1997.
The beautiful and vivacious former flight attendant with an unrivalled zest for life became an inspiration to millions as 
she fought breast cancer – and won – before a secondary bone cancer cut her life so tragically short almost 10 years ago.
She had just celebrated her 42nd birthday with Glenn, who retired from Test cricket in 2007 to spend those last precious months with her and their two young children, James and Holly, who were six and eight respectively when she died.
Jane's light still shines bright through her foundation.
Jane is always close to Glenn's heart as he continues to work tirelessly for her charity, The Jane McGrath foundation.
Gone but never, ever forgotten, Jane left behind a huge legacy –first as a mum and wife, and second as the inspiration and face of the McGrath Foundation, a charity she and Glenn set up 
to help breast cancer sufferers and fund breast cancer nurses around the country.
Now, 10 years on, Jane is still speaking to Australian women.
"Breast cancer doesn't care how old you are, where you 
live, whether you're a career woman or a mother," she warns in a message that takes pride 
of place on the foundation's website.
"Breast cancer is a disease that currently affects 
one in eight Australian women of all ages and backgrounds. Please help the McGrath Foundation support Australian women. Together, we can make a difference."
Jane and Glenn with their two kids James and Holly.
And this year her words have even more resonance, with the inaugural McGrath Foundation Pink Picnic to be held at Allianz Stadium, next to the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), during the lunch break on day three of the Sydney Test, which has become known as the Pink Test in honour of Jane's life and work.
Traditionally known as Ladies Day, day three has now been renamed Jane McGrath Day, 
and it's quite simply a brilliant celebration of life and love 
that the entire cricket world embraces wholeheartedly.
Pink was Jane's favourite colour and each year for the 
past 10 years the SCG has 
blazed with the colour in a heartwarming celebration of 
this British-born woman who adopted Australia as her home.
"She would be amazed where we are [today]… very humble and really proud."

Glenn has always maintained Jane never wanted the charity 
– which they established in 
2002, five years after Jane was diagnosed with breast cancer – to be about her, but rather about all the other Australian women fighting the disease.
"She wanted it to be about 
the nurses and the people going through breast cancer," he said earlier this year.
"She would be amazed where we are [today]… very humble and really proud."

More than 60,000 families have been supported 
by 119 McGrath Breast Care Nurses.
The couple were inspired to create the McGrath Foundation because Jane found her own breast cancer nurse so helpful and comforting she said it was "like having someone hold my hand through one of the worst nightmares of my life".
Since then, more than 60,000 families have been supported 
by 119 McGrath Breast Care Nurses as Glenn and his second wife Sara Leonardi-McGrath, together with James and Holly, continue Jane's work.

"It's all about their mum's legacy, and the day at the SCG is a special time for them," explains Glenn, who says 17-year-old James and 16-year-old Holly 
will help "spearhead" the foundation's work in the future, with plans for them to step into bigger roles in the charity.
"Losing Jane was tragic and 
I thought I'd never get married again or have more children or would even ever want to," adds Glenn, who welcomed daughter Madison in September 2015. "But I was lucky enough to meet Sara and will live the rest of my life for myself and my children and out of respect for Jane."

How can you help?

Pink was Jane's favourite colour and each year for the 
past 10 years the SCG has 
blazed with the colour in a heartwarming celebration of her life and legacy.
Support the McGrath Foundation and soak up the exciting atmosphere of the Ashes Pink Test by buying a ticket to the inaugural Pink Picnic at Allianz Stadium on January 6.
For $45 you will receive a pink picnic rug and lunchbox.

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