Sarah Travers' tribute to 'wonderful' dad
TV presenter Sarah Travers has paid a touching tribute to her 'wonderful' father who passed away three days ago.
The UTV star's 67-year-old dad Ian lost his battle with Alzheimer's disease on Friday after being diagnosed in 2008, aged 62.
On Saturday, the former BBC Newsline anchor posted a personal tribute to him on Facebook and also shared an old family photograph which included her dad and her sister Jennifer.
"Fathers and daughters share a very special bond," she wrote.
"Jennifer and I lost our wonderful dad today to the cruel disease of Alzheimer's which, in fact, stole him from us long before.
"Rest in peace our handsome Daddy. Nothing can hurt or frighten you any more xxxx."
The journalist's social networking pages have been inundated with messages of sympathy from family, friends and colleagues.
Mother-of-two, Sarah has fronted several charity campaigns to raise awareness of the devastating illness since her father's diagnosis.
In 2011 he joined her and 200 other walkers in Belfast's Memory Walk to raise money for the Alzheimer's Society.
Previously, Sarah spoke of the devastating impact of learning of her father's illness.
"When Alzheimer's arrived at our door, it changed our family and changed our lives," she said.
"But it has brought us closer together and we are just so keen and eager to support dad and help him through what is going to be a difficult future."
The former Family Focus presenter left her high-profile job at the BBC in January.
She began her career as a freelancer at Radio Foyle around 17 years ago, giving birth to her first son Jack two years later. She then went on to have a daughter, Evie Rose, who is now nine.
Along with her husband Stephen Price, a journalist, lecturer and author, the family live in Portstewart.
In an interview with the Belfast Telegraph five years ago, the former Dominican College pupil, who has been with Stephen for 17 years, also revealed they had decided to get married in 2009 because her father had been diagnosed with Alzheimer's.
"I always wanted my dad to give me away, so that brought things forward and we decided it was the right time to get everybody together," she said.