Angelina Jolie's aunt has died of breast cancer less than two weeks after the actress revealed that she had undergone a double mastectomy to avoid the disease
Angelina Jolie’s aunt has died of breast cancer less than two weeks after the actress revealed that she had undergone a double mastectomy to avoid the disease.
Debbie Martin, 61, who was the younger sister of Jolie’s mother, Marcheline Bertrand, died in a hospital in San Diego, California, according to her husband, Ron.
Ron Martin said his wife also carried the same defective gene, BRCA1, as Angelina, but had not been not aware of it until she was diagnosed with cancer in 2004. ‘Had we known, we certainly would have done exactly what Angelina did,’ he told Associated Press.
He added that after being diagnosed with breast cancer, his wife had her ovaries removed to minimise her chances of the disease returning.
Angelina Jolie bravely revealed in an article in the New York Times that she’d had a double mastectomy after discovering she had a 87 per cent risk of developing breast cancer and a 50% risk of ovarian cancer.
The actress spoke out about her experiences of having both breasts removed, explaining how her mother’s death had informed her decision to have surgery.
‘My mother fought cancer for almost a decade and died at 56,’ she wrote. ‘She held out long enough to meet the first of her grandchildren and to hold them in her arms. But my other children will never have the chance to know her and experience how loving and gracious she was.’
The empowering and honest article also focuses on the positives adding: ‘On a personal note, I do not feel any less of a woman. I feel empowered that I made a strong choice that in no way diminishes my femininity.’