A newlywed bride has passed away after being told twice that the lump on her thigh was only fat.
28-year-old Gemma Malins went to see her GP about the lump two-and-a-half years ago but the bungling doctor just dismissed it as fat.
Three months later, the doctor made the same judgment even though the lump was already ‘the size of a tennis ball.’
“Another had grown on my breast,” Gemma said at that time.
It was only when she went to another doctor that she was immediately referred to a specialist and she was diagnosed with metastatic melanoma.
“It had spread throughout my whole body,” Gemma told the NZ Herald.
People raised NZ$56,000 to support her when she tried Ipilimumab, an antibody treatment that helps boost the immune system.
However, the treatment wasn’t successful and Gemma passed away.
Gemma and her husband Brandon tied the knot at Duders Beach, east of Beachlands.
“Brandon gave up his whole life for me, his job as a beekeeper. He’s my hero,” she said at that time. “He’s amazing, he’s been with me for every blood test, every needle, every pain, every good and bad day.”
People set up fundraising pages to help with her treatment and to give her a chance to tick off her bucket list.
Even though many of the activities were ticked off, it was hard to do them all because of lockdowns.
Speaking to the Stuff, Pastor Neil Hamilton of Beachlands Baptist Church said that Gemma’s passing had been devastating due to New Zealand’s level 4 restrictions.
“There’s a cruelty to it. There’s no closure for the family,” he expressed.
“She was loved by a lot of people.”
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