Angela Courtney: 'Kind' air hostess, 47, dies of pancreatic cancer weeks after father’s death
LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND: A devastating calamity struck a Merseyside family as their ‘loving and kind’ air hostess daughter died just weeks after her father’s tragic death from ‘broken heart’. Angela Courtney, 47, who was diagnosed with vicious pancreatic cancer, was preparing for her last holiday season with her family when she received the news of her father Tony Courtney's death. Tony, 70, died at his workplace after suffering a cardiac arrest on December 14.
Just three weeks after his death, Angela, from Huyton, Merseyside, lost her battle with pancreatic cancer and died on Tuesday, January 03. Their grief-stricken family held a joint funeral service at St Columba's Church in Huyton on January 17. Angela is survived by her partner John and her six-year-old son Jonny while Tony, an electrician, leaves behind his wife Christine Courtney, 68, and three children Tony (his namesake son), 49, Bootsy, 46, and Beverley Jeffreys, 43.
Tony's family believes he died of a broken heart after learning about his loving daughter’s cancer. "We kind of believe he died of a broken heart because he just couldn't see her die,” his daughter Jeffreys told the Liverpool Echo. She added, "We like to take that comfort that he died before her because he couldn't take anymore."
Angela was first diagnosed with stage three pancreatic cancer in January 2022 after consulting several doctors and visiting dozens of hospitals over the course of a year. The doctors initially believed Angela had a hernia as she complained of pain in her abdomen and suffered rapid weight loss. She was later told that the cancer was terminal. Following months of chemotherapy, she was moved to Marie Curie Hospice in Liverpool in October where she died surrounded by her family.
Paying tribute to her sister, Jeffreys said: "Angela was honestly one of the most kind-hearted people, she was just a beautiful soul. Nobody could say a bad word about her. She was kind, friendly, was funny and she just lived for her family." Angela's co-workers from TUI's cabin crew attended the funeral and formed a guard of honor inside the church. Purple ribbons were encouraged to be worn during the funeral by attendees to raise awareness of pancreatic cancer, and nearly $1,110 (£900) was donated in support of the cause.
"Everybody that went to see Angela, and all the staff at the hospice, everyone would say how dignified she was. She was just amazing. She never complained and she just got on with it," Jeffreys continued. She added, "The staff at the hospice were amazing and they made her life towards the end the best it could be - she wanted for nothing. It's been awful. I'm the youngest of four, I've got two brothers and Angela, we've got a big family and we all just need to be there for my mum."
The family is also planning to build a plague for Angela and Tony, where they can go to remember them. Remembering her father, Jeffreys described him as a "funny and hardworking" father and grandfather. She said: "He was a workaholic. He loved his job and he was so funny, so straightforward." she said "He was one of those guys who would always do you a favor. He was a hardworking dad and grandad."