Why We Love "Love Your Sister"?
We all knew this day was coming, but we were all so sad. Last Friday, 8th September 2017, Samuel Johnson confirmed that his sister Connie Johnson, the founder of the Love Your Sister cancer charity, has died, age 40.
I have been so touched and loved following the journey of Connie and Samuel since my mother, Rae told me one day of Samuel riding his unicycle around Australia.
Connie has battled cancer since she was 11 years old, has had 3 bouts of cancer, and was diagnosed with terminal cancer seven years ago.
We have all been affected by cancer in some way throughout our lives, whether it is self or family/friends. So why did we all love Samuel and Connie's journey?
They are real, fun and remained positive right to the very end. I loved every moment of the past few years, laughing and crying with the pair. Both Samuel and Connie are beautiful, and they are a team I will always remember.
A team who have built one of the largest community awareness and research advocacies, and raised millions for cancer with the famous "Love Your Sister" foundation.
I loved it when Connie admitted it was over a few vodkas to convince Samuel to ride his unicycle over 15,000km around Australia, which set the world record and raised over $1.75 million.
I loved it when Samuel started swearing, and Connie set up the swear jars around Australia and vowed to give up acting until he had raised $10 million.
I loved it when they set up the brilliant 5 cent piece heart in May this year to hear an elated Connie say "I've never felt so much love in my life."
Then we saw Samuel humbly winning the Gold Logie award and last week, Connie received the Order Of Australia in her hospice bed. (Read more here).
Even on Friday, we saw Samuel write: "She went so richly and with such grace. Trust me; she was genuinely cushioned by your love, till the end."
"It was so beautiful. We laughed, we cried, we sang stupid songs from our childhood to her, which she loved (mostly!). I read her so many village messages, which she relished." - ABC news.
I first watched this inspirational "Ted Talk" by Connie a couple of years ago. It gave me an insight into what life with cancer is really like. I have watched it numerous times, especially when I think life is tough! Connie has inspired me to enjoy the little things in life, make my dreams come true with my bucket list, to live life with aspirations, and to realise how lucky we are. Thank you Connie. You will always be a strong fighter to me.
My heart goes out to Connie's family, especially to Samuel, Connie's husband and two young boys, but I also want to thank them for allowing us into the life of beautiful Connie. I feel like I have personally lost a loving friend, as I know you do too.
I look forward to Samuels future journey, look forward to seeing what "Love Your Sister" will keep achieving. If we can all keep donating, then Connie will remain happy, and we can keep her in our hearts.
All Samuel has asked is to please "check your breasts", a message he sent around Australia on his unicycle. Hear Samuel speak about this here at his heartbreaking Tedtalk about his beautiful sister.
You can "get involved" and join the village. Donations can be made here.
Thank you for reading.