Mum who revealed brain tumour in heartbreaking video dies days after turning 50
PUBLISHED: 11:49 13 January 2020 | UPDATED: 12:05 13 January 2020
Norfolk beauty blogger Samantha Last, who revealed she had weeks to live in an emotional final video, has died just 10 days after turning 50.
The mum from Diss, who became well known for her YouTube videos offering make-up and beauty videos to older women, died after being rushed into hospital on January 10 following a brave battle with brain cancer.
Her husband David, 51, said: "Samantha died peacefully with no pain or panic. I am still shocked and dazed. We knew it was going to happen, but I still wasn't mentally ready."
The couple, who had been married for 30 years having first met at Mr Last's 17th birthday party, have four children Danny, 29, Jasmine, 27, Ebony, 23, and Brandon, 21, and seven grandchildren.
The family had spent a precious final Christmas together and marked Samantha's 50th birthday on New Year's Eve.
She died in hospital surrounded by her immediate family, including her twin sister Debbie. She is also survived by her mother Rachel.
Mrs Last had been diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumour after going to A&E in Norwich with a "splitting" headache in September.
As part of her fight she underwent a six-hour operation at Addenbrooke's to remove 90pc of the tumour and had received chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment.
Mr Last said: "Following six weeks of treatment, Samantha's health started to deteriorate, including confusion, dialect issues, shaking and losing the use in her right side.
"The sharpest decline was noticed from January 7 when Samantha was having blackouts, mobility issues and heightened confusion.
"On the early hours of Friday morning, Samantha became unresponsive and breathing became loud and erratic."
Following her diagnosis Mrs Last revealed she had weeks to live to her 15,000 YouTube followers in a heart-breaking video. The news prompted a flood of goodwill messages from around the world. An online appeal to fund a final motorhome trip of a lifetime around the UK raised almost £25,000, and the couple had planned a further trip during a break in treatment over Christmas.
Mr Last said: "We hired the motorhome again during the hospital break with all the children, but unfortunately we had to turn back after 45 miles as Samantha felt ill and collapsed when she got home."
He said following his wife's wishes there will be no funeral ceremony, instead Samantha wanted her immediate family to "find a hill near the sea, adopt a tree in the area for remembrance and let the wind take the ashes away".
The family gathering had been very emotional, he said: "It was the first time they had ever came into the house without their mum and the first reaction was to look for her, then realised she wasn't here and broke down in tears, they did it one by one as they arrived independently."
He added: "We are also going to buy a capsule for each of the special Pandora bracelets and add some ash in each capsule, so Samantha is always with us. This was suggested by Brandon the youngest son.
"Danny, our oldest son, suggested we buy a star and name it after Samantha as a memorial, which we are also going to implement."
Even during her at times harrowing treatment Mrs Last had been able to rekindle her love of posting YouTube videos, updating people on her progress and thanking people for their support.
"I want to thank everyone; you have been amazing. I do have some bad days but the support that I have received has been amazing," she said in her final video.
News of her death has seen an outpouring of sadness from her YouTube channel followers.
One commented: "Samantha was such a joy here on YouTube; I can imagine she was doubly so in person with all her loved ones. I am so sorry for your loss.
"Please know how much she meant to this community and to me personally, even though it was just through the screen."
Another added: "I don't have any words that are adequate at a time like this. She was a beautiful lady, inside and out. She was so brave during this awful time and it was such a treat to get a couple of extra videos from her."