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Tragedy of Carlisle charity mum

A brave woman who successfully fought breast cancer – and has since raised thousands of pounds to help others – has died suddenly as a result of a tragic accident.

Ann Edwards
Ann Edwards

Ann Edwards, 47, of Lawson Street, off Newtown Road, Carlisle, was diagnosed with cancer in about 2002.

It was a huge shock but she was determined not to let it beat her. Tragically, after being cancer-free since 2008, the dedicated fundraiser died from an unrelated accident. Ann was found dead at home last Saturday by her husband, Kevin Rayson. Her family have spoken of their devastation at having lost her so suddenly, and so unexpectedly.

Stepson Matthew Rayson, 22, who has a 15-year-old brother, Lewis, said: “Everyone is still in shock, it just hasn’t really sunk in that she’s gone.

“She affected so many people’s lives. She will be missed by a lot of people.”

The exact cause of her death is not known, other than it was a tragic accident.

A postmortem has been carried out and an inquest will be held in due course.

Ann’s cancer was diagnosed after she noticed a lump in her breast during a regular self-examination.

She had surgery to remove it, followed by chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

Following her diagnosis, Ann devoted much of her life to raising awareness of the illness and encouraging others to check their breasts.

She also raised thousands of pounds every year for various breast cancer charities.

Events included Pink Parties – where guests were encouraged to go in the bathroom to check their breasts for lumps – and most recently, a charity bingo night at Rex in Denton Holme last month.

Her battle with cancer sparked Ann, who had previously worked as a secretary at legal firms across the city, to land her dream job – as an administrator at Carlisle’s Cumberland Infirmary, the hospital that saved her life.

Ann is also survived by her mum Wynn Edwards, brother Paul and nephew and niece Daniel and Megan.

Her funeral will take place on Monday at St Bede’s Church, in Wigton Road, at 12.45pm. Guests are asked to wear casual colourful clothes, rather than black. The service will be followed by burial at Carlisle Cemetery. An avid collector of teddy bears, Ann will be buried alongside her favourite bear, called Bobby.

Have your say

Truly saddened and shocked to learn of the death of a friend and former colleague.A lovely person who will be missed by many.

Posted by kevin jackson on 12 March 2012 at 19:00

Rest in peace Ann, I'll always remember the laughs we had working together all those years ago. You always made me smile no matter how stressed we were! Very shocked and sad to hear the tragic news, my thoughts are with your family xx

Posted by Dawn on 11 March 2012 at 17:31

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