CERVICALCHECK CAMPAIGNER Ruth Morrissey has died.
Ms Morrissey passed at Milford Hospice in Limerick. She was just 39.
The mother-of-one was among 221 women in Ireland to be affected in the CervicalCheck scandal in which a number of incorrect test results were provided to patients undergoing cervical smear tests.
Ms Morrissey was first diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2014.
Though she made an initial recovery, the cancer returned in 2018 and eventually became terminal.
An audit of the labs used to test the slides used in these checks subsequently revealed that several had been incorrectly reported – including Ms Morrissey's.
She was one of several women to initiate legal proceedings against the HSE and the two laboratories involved in the examination of the cervical smear tests.
Ms Morrissey and her husband Paul were eventually handed damages in the amount of €2.1 million.
Much like fellow campaigners Vicky Phelan, Lorraine Walsh, Stephen Teap and the late Emma Mhic Mhathúna, Ms Morrissey showed incredible courage in the fight for justice.
A symbol for bravery and honour, she showed remarkable bravery and determination to continue attending court throughout proceedings despite her terminal diagnosis.
Never one for the limelight, her quest for justice was one that won her huge support and admiration across Ireland.
She gave a voice to the 221 women affected by the CervicalCheck screening scandal and fought for justice and a better future for her husband and their beloved daughter Libby.
I was on my own this morning at home when I received the news that I have been dreading for some time now, the news that my good friend and fellow CervicalCheck campaigner Ruth Morrissey has died.
Ruth passed away peacefully at Milford Hospice... pic.twitter.com/QWms9G6rH1
— Vicky Phelan (@PhelanVicky) July 19, 2020
Fellow campaigner Phelan was among those to pay tribute to her friend, reminding many of the underlying tragedy and impact of those fateful mistakes.
“I was on my own this morning at home when I received the news that I have been dreading for some time now, the news that my good friend and fellow CervicalCheck campaigner Ruth Morrissey has died,” she said on Twitter.
“My children are away for a few days at my parents. I am so glad they are not here. I don't have to try to put on a brave face and can just sit here with my feelings and grieve for Ruth and for the life that she didn't get to live, for the time she didn't get to spend with Libby.
“Ruth was one of the strongest women I know, and also one of the most positive. I never once saw her without a smile on her face and I saw her when she was very ill. My thoughts today are with Ruth's husband, Paul and their beautiful daughter, Libby who Ruth adored.”