Inspirational Amy Usher loses her cancer battle

Amy Usher, left, with her sister Beth and Steelers star Tim Spencer with the play-off champions trophy

Amy Usher, left, with her sister Beth and Steelers star Tim Spencer with the play-off champions trophy

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She wafted into the room, her beautiful, big eyes and flashing smile halting the rest of us in our tracks.

Amy Usher always had that affect, you felt you were in the presence of somebody quite remarkable.

She spotted me carrying a sponsorship form in my hand - it was to raise money for this coming Sunday’s Five Weir Walk...in aid of Weston Park Cancer Charity.

For me, it felt awkward, to say the least. Showing a young woman suffering from a severe throat cancer a sponsorship form to raise money to fight the disease which was slowly killing her.

“Oh great, have you got a pen?” she said, putting me at ease, at a stroke.

And so the first name on my form was her’s and delivered with her trademark warmth and elegance.

Amy Usher

Amy Usher

“Make sure everyone ticks the gift aid box,” she advised. “Good luck, see you there” she added before heading out of the Sheffield Steelers’ press room, to meet friends, her sister Beth and watch an ice hockey match, one of her great passions.

I won’t be seeing her there on Sunday.

The 21-year-old passed away on Thursday, at the very hospital she promised a ten pound note for and which had cared for her for many months.

It will be my honour to pay her £10 and the rest of the money I and people like Steelers official Dave Simms have collected so far.

Elliot Hall, Dave Simms, Amy Usher and Neil Edwards on the Arena ice. Pic: Dean Woolley

Elliot Hall, Dave Simms, Amy Usher and Neil Edwards on the Arena ice. Pic: Dean Woolley

He and two others have raised more than £13,000 in a gruelling, on-going walk from Warwickshire to Sheffield.

Yet Amy, the girl who had captured the essence of life with her humour, her kindness and her chatty nature, has gone.

Finally beaten by a disease which simply could not be contained, despite the expertise of Weston Park.

The Wath upon Dearne woman knew when she filled in my form that nothing could help her, personally.

She’d been told her Liposarcoma was incurable and that it was extending its pernicious reach inside her.

Today she leaves behind a family and friends group that face a period of intense grief and mourning. But they will also remember the way she effortlessly inspired everyone.

In one sense, she wrote her own epitaph.

Last year she said this in The Star: “In the same position some people get bitter and hate the world but I don’t. I just think bad stuff does happen but the world is still lovely.

“The sad thing is my life will be shorter than most but it makes me remember to make the most of everything. I fill every day spending time with friends and family and doing things I love. I want people to treat me as a normal person – I don’t want to be seen as the girl who is ill.

“Of course there are days when it hits everyone but I just want to get on with it. I don’t dwell on things because if I let myself be ill, people are going to treat me like I’m ill. I still have dreams I want to achieve like doing a skydive for charity, going in a hot air balloon and maybe even visit Australia...”