Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 23 September 2014

Angelina Jolie’s aunt succumbs to breast cancer

Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie’s aunt Debbie Martin passed away from breast cancer complications two weeks after the actress announced she underwent a preventative double mastectomy.

The 37-year-old actress revealed just weeks ago she underwent a double mastectomy as a preventative measure.

Last week Angelina’s aunt fell into a breast cancer induced coma after suffering a seizure. Debbie’s husband Ronald told the UK’s Sunday People her life-support was “turned off” at hospital and her brother-in-law Rick believed the cancer “spread everywhere”.

E! News confirms Debbie perished in the early morning on Sunday at California’s Palomar Hospital at the age of 61. She was the biological sister of Angelina’s mother Marcheline Bertrand who died in 2007 after a seven-year bout with ovarian cancer.

Debbie is survived by husband Rick and their sons Chris and Cory.

Angelina reached out to her extended family throughout the ordeal.

"Angelina has been sending her wishes," widower Ron told People magazine.

"She and my wife texted each other. It was difficult for my wife, during the last few months, to communicate."

Earlier this month Angelina revealed in a New York Times piece she carries a BRCA1 gene mutation. This genetic condition significantly increased her chances of developing breast and ovarian cancer.

She is believed to be planning to have her ovaries and uterus removed before her 40th birthday to further lower her risk.

Angelina previously revealed cancer has wreaked havoc on her family for a long time.

“There is no longevity on my mother’s side,” Angelina told Esquire in 2010. “My grandmother also died young so my mother always thought it could happen to her.”

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