Tragic Sarah lost her battle with cancer, but never her love of life

The tragic death of a wonderful young woman has made the world a sadder place, but the stories and memories she leaves behind will continue to enrich the lives of those who loved her.

The tragic death of a wonderful young woman has made the world a sadder place, but the stories and memories she leaves behind will continue to enrich the lives of those who loved her.

After a long battle with cancer, Sarah Nealis passed away this year on April 21. She was 31 years old.

Sarah, who was originally from England, had lived for years in Ballyragget. Her partner Paul Murphy is from Kilkenny.

Following her diagnosis with the illness in June 2010, Sarah was determined to experience life to the full. With kind donations from well-wishers, she was able to fulfil a dream by embarking on a trek in Peru - much to the amazement of her doctors.

Sarah’s parents June and Billy, her sister Kerry, and her partner Paul have expressed their sincere thanks to all family, friends and colleagues for the support and help that Sarah received since having been diagnosed with cancer. They thanked everybody who attended her funeral, and those who sent cards, words of support, and donations for the hospice.

“We are and always will be immensely proud to be her parents, sister and partner,” they said.

“We will always love and miss her. She was a totally unique person, beautiful inside and out, who can never be replaced in our hearts. Thank you all very much.”

Sarah Nealis was a very brave, beautiful woman who loved life to the last. She was selfless, being more concerned for others than herself.

Below, in her own words, are some of her musings on life following her diagnosis with terminal cancer.

Diagnosis - my story

“June 16 will forever be ingrained in my mind the day my life changed, some would say devastatingly for the worst.

I’d like to think it changed because it was meant to and this is my own personal journey on Earth, with all the lessons I need to learn along the way. One of these lessons happens to be cancer, although cancer itself is not the lesson: Every change, thought, idea, feeling, emotion, experience since has been.

I just wanted to feel and experience life... I had hidden away too long. Why is it so scary to be oneself? It leaves us feeling vulnerable. If people don’t respond to us positively... it’s a blow.

So better to stay hidden away and protected. We need to learn that being happy with who we are, attracts same (laws of attraction).”

Sarah.