A woman has announced her own death from cancer in a heartbreaking LinkedIn post in which she describes how she ‘chose joy’ in the final days of her life.  

Daniella Thackray, 25, a HR professional from Leeds, had pre-written her thought-provoking final words for her family to post on her behalf after her death from a rare and aggressive form of bile duct cancer, also known as cholangiocarcinoma.

The post has since racked up nearly 35,000 likes as people were left moved by Daniella’s positive outlook despite her tragic circumstances. 

As she paid tribute to her family, fiancé Tom, and dog Leo, Daniella encouraged her network to ‘enjoy the little things’ in life and ‘cherish every moment’. 

She wrote: ‘If you’re reading this then it means I have died from my battle with cancer and my family are posting my final message on my behalf. 

Daniella Thackray has moved the internet with a poignant final message left on her LinkedIn account after she passed away from cancer

Daniella Thackray has moved the internet with a poignant final message left on her LinkedIn account after she passed away from cancer

Daniella had a rare and aggressive form of bile duct cancer, also known as cholangiocarcinoma. Pictured in an update on LinkedIn seven months ago in hospital

Daniella had a rare and aggressive form of bile duct cancer, also known as cholangiocarcinoma. Pictured in an update on LinkedIn seven months ago in hospital

‘Firstly, I just want to say that not all cancers are caused by lifestyle choices, in some cases it’s genetics or unfortunately it just happens. 

‘In my case, despite me being very healthy and active, a cancer started in my bile ducts which was not caused by anything in my control and my life was never the same again. 

‘Cholangiocarinoma is a rare aggressive cancer with often no obvious causes and no cure. I really really do hope that in the years to come more research is done about this horrid cruel disease so that more lives can be saved.’

Accompanying her post, Daniella chose a black and white photograph of her walking her dog along the beach.  

The emotional message continued: ‘So with that being said, although we can’t control what happens to us, we can control how we react. I chose not to mourn the life I was losing despite being so devastated, but to instead enjoy every moment I had left.

‘As I have always said and believed, you should enjoy the little things in life and cherish every moment! Romanticise your life! Do whatever makes you happy and don’t let anyone take the joy of life away from you. 

‘I LOVED my life. Everything I had achieved was what I wanted. I loved my job, my fiancé, my family, my friends and my dog, and the house we were going to buy and the future we were making for ourselves. Leo my fur baby was definitely brought into my life to help brighten my darkest days.

Daniella paid tribute to her family, friends, fiancé and dog, and encouraged her followers to 'enjoy the little things in life'

Daniella paid tribute to her family, friends, fiancé and dog, and encouraged her followers to ‘enjoy the little things in life’

Accompanying her post, Daniella chose a black and white photograph of her walking her dog along the beach

Accompanying her post, Daniella chose a black and white photograph of her walking her dog along the beach

Daniella Thackray, from Leeds, had pre-written her incredibly thought-provoking final words for her family to post on her behalf

 Daniella Thackray, from Leeds, had pre-written her incredibly thought-provoking final words for her family to post on her behalf

Daniella posted an update in her cancer battle seven months ago, also on LinkedIn, revealing she'd had a liver resection and gall bladder surgery

Daniella posted an update in her cancer battle seven months ago, also on LinkedIn, revealing she’d had a liver resection and gall bladder surgery

‘And lastly to my dear, beautiful Tom, I love you and always will. Thank you for supporting me and bringing so much love and happiness into my life. Go enjoy your life now, you deserve it.’

Daniella had worked in HR at 26 since July 2022 and previously studied at Newcastle University.  

She posted an update in her cancer battle seven months ago, revealing she’d had a liver resection and gall bladder surgery.

Daniella posted pictures of herself in the hospital ward, saying she was taking time to ‘rest, recover and learn how to walk again’, while asking for TV and film recommendations.

WHAT IS CHOLANGIOCARCINOMA (bile duct cancer)? 

Bile duct cancer, also called cholangiocarcinoma, is a cancer that is found anywhere in the bile ducts – small tubes that connect different organs including the liver and gall bladder. 

The cells can eventually grow into surrounding healthy tissues or organs, and spread to other parts of the body.  

Symptoms can be difficult to spot but may include: the whites of your eyes turning yellow, or the skin turning yellow; darker pee and paler poo; loss of appetite; losing weight unexpectedly; feeling unwell, tired, or having little energy. 

Your risk of getting bile duct cancer increases as you get older and most people develop it over the age of 65. 

Those with primary sclerosing cholangitis, a type of inflammation in the bile ducts, also have an increased risk of cholangiocarcinoma, as do those with long-term swelling in the bowel (ulcerative colitis), a parasite in the liver (liver flukes), bile duct stones and liver cirrhosis. 

In England, around 2,800 people each year are diagnosed with bile duct cancer, according to Cancer Research UK, and this number is increasing. 

Sources: NHS and Cancer Research UK 

Daniella’s message has left the internet heartbroken, and many rushed to express their condolences and well wishes for her family. 

One said: ‘I’m literally in tears. Having been diagnosed with Stage 1A breast cancer in August, then surgery (lumpectomy) followed by radiation, this message from her hits home.’

Another said: ‘Wow. Such courageous words from someone that I’ve never met, but taught me a lot.’

A third commented: ‘You are an amazing lady, what a wonderful message to leave us with, may you rest in paradise.’ 

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