FORMER Labour cabinet minister Dame Tessa Jowell passed away at her south Warwickshire home at the weekend but not without words of hope for fellow cancer patients.
The 70-year-old, who was diagnosed with brain cancer a year ago, suffered a haemorrhage on Friday (May 12), and died the following day at her home near Shipston.
The veteran politician was vocal about her illness and campaigned heavily for more cancer treatments to be made available through the NHS.
During a speech in parliament which earned her a standing ovation she said: “In the end, what gives a life meaning is not only how it is lived, but how it draws to a close.
“I hope that this debate will give hope to other cancer patients, like me, so we can live well together with cancer, not just dying of it. All of us, for longer.”
The former social worker first stood for parliament in 1978 but was defeated twice before she finally made it to Westminster in 1992 as MP for Dulwich and West Norwood in London.
Dame Tessa was employment minister and minister for women, before joining the cabinet as culture secretary in 2001, and played a major role in bringing the Olympic Games to London in 2012.
In the same year she was made a Dame for her service to politics and charity.
After stepping down as an MP in 2015, she was made Baroness Jowell of Brixton.
Paying tribute, Stratford MP Nadhim Zahawi tweeted: “RIP Tessa. I knew you as a colleague and a constituent. You were so welcoming to me in parliament.
“I will miss you very much. Your work and your memory will live on forever.”