Northern Ireland news

Tributes to north Belfast mother who passed away a year after death of son (12)

Brenda Hamilton (43), who passed away on Wednesday following a battle with cervical cancer pictured with her son, Sean (12), who passed away last July
Marie Louise McConville

THE family of a north Belfast woman have been left devastated by her death which comes a year after the tragic loss of her 12-year-old son.

Brenda Hamilton, who was 43, died on Wednesday, a week before the first anniversary of her death of her son Sean.

The schoolboy, who suffered from a heart defect, died last July from complications following surgery at Our Lady’s Children’s Hospital in Dublin.

The popular 12-year-old had played football for St Patrick's FC.

His mother, who lived on North Queen Street, was diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2017.

Following treatment, she was told she was in remission.

However, just before the lockdown in March, she was told the cancer had come back and she was given six months to live.

Her daughter Shona said the family was "in shock" at the death since they are "still grieving Sean".

"When we found out she was dying she said she was hoping to hold off until Sean's anniversary," she said.

"It's his anniversary on Tuesday", she said recalling how her mother had been left "heartbroken" by her son's death.

The 23-year-old said her mother would be remembered as someone who was generous and "really fun and caring".

"She was very mothering and looked after everyone," she said.

"We always said she was the glue of our family. She would given you the clothes off her back."

Saying her mother "fought til the end", she said: "She kept her personality, still cracking jokes and had everything sorted exactly as she wanted."

"We all just have to stick together now. We are a close family anyway, so we have to support each other."

Shona added: "It is going to be really empty. I am just in shock. Even though we knew it was coming, it was a shock, you just can't prepare for these things.

"She will be greatly missed."

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