Manchester mother-of-three Leora Kuhillow has lost her battle against leukaemia after an unsuccessful bone marrow transplant.
Tributes to the courage and fortitude shown by the 33-year-old in the eight months since being diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia were paid at the funeral at Failsworth cemetery last Friday, which was attended by hundreds of family and friends.
She had died the previous day at Manchester Royal Infirmary, two months after the transplant for which a donor match was found in Israel.
Mrs Kuhillow had used her plight to promote the Anthony Nolan Trust and its Israeli counterpart Ezer Mizion. More than 600 people joined the international bone marrow donor register after she helped friends to organise donor drives in April and June, the largest ever within Manchester’s Jewish community.
Earlier in the year, over 1,000 people took part in prayer vigils in her name after doctors gave her only days to live.
A source close to the family paid tribute to Mrs Kuhillow’s concern for others, even in her final days.
“She had incredible bravery and an amazing amount of faith in God. At the hospital she was calming the rest of the family.”
Dr Guy Lucas, haematology consultant at Manchester Royal Infirmary, said that “staff were humbled by her strength and calm philosophical acceptance for such a young person at the end of her life”.
At Ezer Mizion — the world’s largest Jewish bone marrow registry — a spokesman saluted “her valiant struggle. Her resolve, her hope, her will to live against all odds and her untimely passing drives us to continue our efforts to enlarge the registry and provide a match for every patient who comes our way”.