Australian tennis great Casey Dellacqua is in mourning after her sister-in-law Nicole died following a short battle with inoperable cancer.
Nicole was diagnosed at the turn of the year just days after her second daughter Bowie had reached a milestone in her own battle with a severe chronic lung disease.
Bowie had been born premature at 23 weeks and spent months in hospital.
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“Well that was a tough journey for them and amazingly Bowie is now a gorgeous little one-year-old and is an absolute miracle,” Dellacqua said.
“The girls had just got through that journey and Bowie had come off full-time oxygen support in December, and two weeks later Nicole was diagnosed with stage 4b cancer.”
Casey Dellacqua and her family are mourning the death of her sister-in-law Nicole. Credit: Instagram
Nicole’s cancer started in her ovaries and had spread to her lungs, liver and lymph nodes.
Chemotherapy failed and she was told in June that she could have just months to live.
She completed one round of immunotherapy treatment with an expensive drug from the US but died this month.
“To our kids she was their Aunty Nicole and to us she was our divine sister-in-law Nic,” Dellacqua wrote.
“She has left us way too soon. Valiantly fighting cancer for the last six months, it breaks my heart to share her passing surrounded by her loved ones on the 11th of July.
“We miss you more than you will ever know Nic. You were the kindest most gentle soul. We promise to look after your loving partner Kristy and your two beautiful girls Liv and Bowie like our own forever.
“It has been devastating to watch Nic pass and to see Kristy and her girls left behind grieving and having to find a way to live without their beautiful Mummy.
“Hold on to your loved ones tight.”
Nicole died surrounded by her family. Credit: Instagram
The sporting world joined friends in rallying around Dellacqua this week.
“So very sorry for your loss,” tennis legend Billie Jean King wrote.
“So sorry to hear this, thinking of you,” Australian star Daria Saville said.
Swimming great Giaan Rooney wrote: “The saddest of news… so very sorry for all of you who loved Nicole, just heartbreaking.”
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