Death of popular Burnley hairdresser and devoted mum after courageous battle against six brain tumours
Tributes have been paid to a popular and bubbly Burnley hairdresser, and devoted mum of two, who has died after she was diagnosed with six inoperable brain tumours.
In an amazing outpouring of love and support, friends, relatives and clients of 39-year-old Paula Thompson rallied to donate over £7,000 to help her family after she received the devastating news in February.
The fund was set up by Paula's stepdaughter, Leila Haggerty, who is 21, after the family were flooded with messages from people who wanted to help.
Leila said: ""I would like to thank everyone, on behalf of my dad and the family, for all the messages of love to Paula over the past two months, they are appreciated more than you all know.
Paula was rushed to the Royal Blackburn Hospital at the beginning of December after falling ill at home.
She was later transferred to the Royal Preston Hospital where she underwent a series of tests, including CT and MRI scans over the next few weeks. After a brain biopsy was carried out, doctors discovered the tumours.
Describing Paula as the 'kindest stepmum' Leila said the list of people who loved Paula and the people's lives she had touched was 'endless' adding: "Paula was someone who could brighten up the room in the gloomiest of moods, and equally be the strongest and most wise shoulder to cry on when you need.
"She was a wonderful wife, mum, daughter and sister.
"The love and support Paula extended out to friends, family, clients and even strangers was like no other, the impact she's had and the gaps she will leave in peoples hearts will never be filled."
A student at the former Ivy Bank High School, Paula went on to study hairdressing at Nelson and Colne College before starting work at Jai's cutting Crew on Hammerton Street in Burnley.
Friends and family of Paula described her as the' life and soul of the party' and always the first one on the dance floor, the last one off and the person guaranteed to put a smile on people's faces.
Paul, her husband of four years, revealed how it was love at first sight for the couple after they met on a blind date.
Paul said: 'We met after Paula's driving instructor suggested I should take one of her pupils on a blind date
"Three weeks later we met and fell in love instantly."
In June, 2017, the couple, who have two sons, Archie who is 12 and four-year-old Harry, got married on a beautiful beach front setting on the Greek island of Kos in front of close family and friends.
A devoted mum, Paula became a mobile hairdresser so she could look after her sons and still do her job.
Paul added:"Paula absolutely doted on our boys, they were her world and she loved them with every fibre of her being.
"Paula took on the task of becoming a mobile hairdresser so she could have the flexibility to give her best to the boys and our family as well as support them financially."
The family was completed with the arrival of two French bulldogs, Jessie and Roxy, who did not leave Paula's side when she came home at the beginning of March.
Paul added: "Paula has always been all about her family and her two beautiful boys, making the three months in hospital pretty unbearable especially during the restrictions of Covid-19."
Christmas was postponed in the Thompson household on December 25th as the family had promised Disney fan Paula nothing would take place until she was home. Christmas decorations remained in place and once Paula came home the family celebrated together.
Paul added: "'We're grateful and fortunate to have got Paula home as we had promised her over these tough months that we would bring her home and that she would have a Christmas, no matter what."
Paul has also thanked the Bleasdale team at the Royal Preston Hospital for the 'second to none' support and help given to the familly.
Paula's funeral will be held on Monday, March 29th, at Burnley Crematorium at 10am and mourners are invited to wear something pink.
The service will be streamed for those who cannot attend due to covid restrictions and people are also invited to stand outside, but observe social distancing guidelines.
Paula's funeral cortege will leave Pendle Way at around 9-30am and the route will go across the roundabout and along Accrington Road for anyone who wishes to pay their final respects.
The gofund me page to support Paula's family can be found by clicking HERE