A MOTHER-of-two, who devoted the last years of her life to fund-raising to help others, will be remembered for her energy for life and her big smile.
Andrea Ives, 46, died on July 17 after a three-and-a-half year battle against ovarian cancer.
Her husband, Mal, said: “She was so brave, smiling until the very end.”
Since being diagnosed with advanced cancer in October 2008, Andrea and her family raised £8,000 for charities including Ovarian Cancer Action and Marie Curie Cancer Care. They organised darts nights, parties and even a charity calendar to make the money.
Mal, of Branston Lane, Knipton, said: “Everyone that knew her was inspired by whatever she did. If I got down or miserable she would ask what I was miserable about and say she was still here.
“Even the night before she passed away, she was so weak she couldn’t hold herself up but she was laughing about it.”
Mal said Andrea’s plan was to live to celebrate their wedding anniversary on July 14.
He said: “She was determined to get to that date. The next day she said that she’d done what she wanted to do and now she wanted to have a rest.
“Now the suffering has stopped. But the hurt and the missing is still obviously there with me all the time.”
Over the last few months, the couple travelled together, fulfilling Andrea’s dreams to stay in a lighthouse and in a Cornish castle.
Mal said: “We’ve been all over the world but she knew she hadn’t got long left and this is what she wanted. You would think being so ill you would want to rest but not Andrea.”
The funeral for Andrea, who had a daughter Angel, 16, and son Kit, 15, was on July 25.
Mal added: “She said we were lucky, she said what we have done is more than most people do in their lifetimes. She lived life to the full and enjoyed it, but it was just too short.”
l If you would like make a donation in Andrea’s memory go to www.mariecurie.org.uk or to find out more about ovarian cancer symptoms you can go to: www.ovarian.org.uk