Get the tissues out! Kate Ritchie pens heartfelt letter to daughter Mae Webb

"I thought the love of my life was Home and Away. Then I met this perfect being..."
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Yesterday marked long-running soapie Home and Away‘s 30th birthday.

Leading the tributes to celebrate the impressive milestones was none other than Kate Ritchie, who played the nation’s first daughter Sally Fletcher for 20 years.

Among the flurry of incredible throwback photos, the actress penned a poignant note to her three-year-old daughter Mae Webb, who she shares with husband and NRL player Stuart Webb.

Alongside a rare selfie with her mini-me little giel, who she rarely posts photos of on social media, the 39-year-old opened up the newfound lease on life she was given after becoming Mae’s mum.

“I thought the love of my life was Home and Away.. Then I met this perfect being,” Kate began.

“It’s been a long road but I am so proud and so happy that I gave myself the chance to realise my greatest life achievements didn’t all have to be thanks to Sally Fletcher.”

Kate capped off her message with a tribute to her on-screen character Sally: “Thank you for having me @homeandaway and Sally #ifyourereadingthis I miss you every day.. #summerbay #life #love #family #homeandaway #sallyfletcher #thirtyyears #happybirthday.”

After two decades playing Sally Fletcher, Kate has spoken openly about struggling with her identity after leaving the show.

“People wanted to meet me because of Sally, or I won awards because of Sally, or I was invited to great events because of Sally,” Kate told Stellar last year.

“When you don’t remember your life without it and all of a sudden that doesn’t exist, you wonder, ‘what is it about me that is attractive?”

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The Gold Logie-winning beauty left the show in 2007 with her final scenes airing in 2008. She admits Sally was a “security blanket” she had to learn to live without.

“It’s been a very long process of trying to work that out – it was about finding my own identity. And what I realised is, ‘No, Kate brought wonderful things to my life.’ I had to finally realise Sally was a result of me, not the other way around.”

Kate has since gone on to host the Kate, Tim and Marty Radio Show on Nova as well as write the children’s book I Just Couldn’t Wait to Meet You.

Kate, pictured with Mae and Stuart, has gone on to star on radio and pen a children’s book.

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