Connie Johnson has died, aged 40, her brother announced tonight.
Australia rallied around Connie, the sister of actor Samuel Johnson, who with her brother raised more than $6 million for cancer research.
She fought cancer three times in her lifetime, but today lost her battle.
“We lost Connie today. Or, as she asked me to say, she died of cancer today,” actor Samuel Johnson wrote on his sister’s Love My Sister Facebook page, along with a black and white photograph of her standing undressed and holding a bowl being proffered for collections.
“It was so beautiful. We laughed, we cried, we sang stupid songs from our childhood to her, which she loved (mostly!).
“I read her so many village messages, which she relished. She went so richly, and with such grace. Trust me, she was genuinely cushioned by your love, till the end.”
Johnson asked for tributes to be left at www.loveforconnie.org “so our family can keep them forever”.
“I’m sad and sorry to be the one to tell you this, yet at the same time, as the Chief Custodian of my sister’s legacy, I also feel extremely grateful and proud,” he said.
“I’m off to cuddle the fam and warmly embrace an exquisite whisky, in memory of my sister, who did so bloody well, from start to finish.
“Thanks for everything, Connie Cottonsocks. It was my pleasure to be your Sammy Seal.
“Thank f— for this village. See you on Connie’s tribute wall we built. xsammy.”
Hundreds of Australians, or Love Your Sister “villagers”, as Sam and Connie called them, have left tributes on her “Wall of Love” to honour her legacy as a fighter who “moved mountains”.
“The world has lost a very special soul and heaven has gained an angel,” one person wrote.
“Such strength, courage, grace and beauty,” left another.
Others have taken to social media, where Connie too shared her most challenging fight.
“You dreamt up a village, and along came an empire. Thank you for teaching us humility, inspiring us to move mountains and for making this world a better place,” said one woman on Facebook.