Roz Purcell opens up on the moment she realised her sister had cancer: “It was like someone punched me in the face.”

"It was the worst weekend ever."

Roz and Rachel Purcell
It was a hard time for the family.

Roz Purcell has opened up about the heart wrenching moment she discovered her sister had Leukaemia.

Roz’s sister Rachel was diagnosed with the disease in January and it has been a rollercoaster of emotions for them ever since.

Rachel and Roz have spoken out candidly about how they dealt with the news in the early days of  the diagnosis in the Irish Independent’s Weekend magazine.

Roz recalls the poignant moment she heard the news.

She said, “I heard her run in and it was clear she was upset, I asked her what was wrong but she couldn’t talk, she was sobbing.

“When she was able to tell me, it was like somebody had punched me in the face.

“Then she said our parents were on the way and it escalated so quickly -this had all happened in the space of a day.”

These two are inseparable.
These two are inseparable.

The weekend that followed the diagnosis, the pair describe as “the worst weekend ever.”

Rachel told the magazine, “It was so hard because we didn’t know anything at that point, there were no test results.

“We didn’t know what stage it was at, what it was or anything.”

When the test results came back they showed that Rachel had Chronic Myeloid Leukaemia. This is a type of incurable Leukaemia that is controllable and patients can live with through out their lives.

Rachel is a health and fitness fanatic just like her sister roz and she feels like her healthy lifestyle will help her fight the disease.

She said, “I think I’m in a good position in a way because I have a healthy lifestyle. Most people with CML lead a really normal life, it’s not the be all and end all -you’re not doomed with it!”

We’re delighted to see Rachel has such a positive attitude despite her diagnosis.


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