A FAMILY were left with "tears in their eyes" as tributes flooded in for an "inspirational" woman who had a profound effect on so many lives.

A loving wife, mother of two daughters, co-owner of her own business, and Vice President of Tyldesley Swimming & Water Polo Club, Joanne Binks was given the devastating diagnosis that she had Stage 3 Triple Negative Breast Cancer in 2017.

As this is an aggressive form of cancer that does not respond to regular treatment, Joanne was told that she had a 66% chance of surviving the next three years.

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Leigh Journal: Joanne defied the odds to live for more than five years after her initial diagnosisJoanne defied the odds to live for more than five years after her initial diagnosis (Image: Nick Binks)

However, in typical Joanne fashion, her husband Nick said that she was "absolutely up for the fight" and spent hours researching the condition, and cut out alcohol and changed her diet at the drop of a hat.

Despite the pain that she battled with in chemotherapy, she also kept her family's spirits up by getting them involved in her head shave and consoled other cancer patients in hospital waiting rooms - highlighting her selfless characteristics and how she always put others before herself.

So despite her concerning three year prognosis, Joanne achieved the cancer-free goal and reached the five year all-clear mark in November 2022.

Leigh Journal: Joanne with her daughters Lauren and JennaJoanne with her daughters Lauren and Jenna (Image: Nick Binks)

However, just as Joanne and the family began to stop looking over her shoulder as much, she began suffering from severe headaches earlier this year.

Despite receiving initial reassurance that this was nothing to worry about, Joanne pushed for a brain scan and it was later confirmed that she had a brain tumour, and that the Triple Negative Cancer had returned.

Fighting another courageous battle for two months, this fight was one too many for Joanne and she passed away at the end of April, aged 49.

Leigh Journal: Tributes flooded in for Joanne after her passingTributes flooded in for Joanne after her passing (Image: Nick Binks)

Although Triple Negative Breast Cancer is the most aggressive form of breast cancer and most common in women aged between 40-50 years old, breast cancer screenings are not offered until the age of 50-70.

That's why Nick and the family are now doing all they can to raise awareness of the "lethal" Triple Negative Breast Cancer, alert people to the signs and symptoms, and encourage them "to not take no for an answer" if they are concerned.

Leigh Journal: Family friend Ella Toone dedicated her recent match to JoanneFamily friend Ella Toone dedicated her recent match to Joanne (Image: Ella Toone)

Aware of the impact that Joanne had on others, Nick said he was not surprised that tributes started to form for his wife, but was taken aback at the sheer volume of messages and evidence of how much she had made a difference in life.

Nick, from Tyldesley, said: "When we put the news out, I turned my phone off and me and the girls walked around the Trafford Centre.

"When I turned it back on, we weren't surprised by the number of comments, but we did get a bit overwhelmed as they kept pouring in. We all had tears in our eyes because we were just so proud of the effect that she had on others.

"A lot of the tributes were from people she had worked with over the years, because she was always wanting to help people be the best that they could be. She was inspirational, she always had a smile on her face and really left an impact on everyone she met.

"She was also an extremely family-orientated person and an amazing mother and role model to our two daughters.

"She would be mortified to have such a fuss made over her as she always put others before herself, but I think she would trade this off with raising awareness of Triple Negative Breast Cancer and trying to help others."

  • In memory of Joanne, a fundraising page has been set up to raise money for the Shine Bright Foundation which is promoting research and support of Triple Negative Breast Cancer. To donate you can follow this link.
  • For further information about breast cancer signs and symptoms, you can find the NHS website here.
  • For more help and support surrounding cancer and bereavement support, you can find Macmillan Cancer Support website here.