Carrie Bickmore has broken down in tears recalling her former husband’s tragic death after a long battle with brain cancer, admitting their son now reminds her of him every day.
Appearing in a rare and very emotional TV interview on the ABC’s Anh’s Brush with Fame – set to air in two weeks time – the 37-year-old TV star recalled her wedding day with Greg Lange and their determination not to allow his devastating diagnosis to rule their lives.
Greg lost his battle with brain cancer in December 2010, leaving his loving wife and their son Oliver. Now, Carrie has gone on to set up her charity Beanies 4 Brain Cancer in his memory, and she’s revealed they’ve raised $4.2million since she announced the campaign during an emotional speech at the 2015 Logie Awards.
He was first diagnosed at 25 – when Carrie was just 22 – shortly after the couple moved to Melbourne together for the TV star to pursue her dream on the radio.
Greg suffered a seizure at home at the time, which eventually led to him discovering he had brain cancer – something Carrie admitted they both knew very little about at the time.
“It was just… everything we knew, everything we had planned, everything we thought, it just threw everything on its head. It was the start of an incredibly hard journey,” she told Anh.
While the couple weren’t married at that point, they eventually tied the knot when Carrie was 25. Recalling their wedding day, Carrie said it was a roller coaster of emotions, but also a chance for both of them to focus on the positive love they shared.
They vowed never to focus too much on Greg’s uncertain future, and instead to live every day as it came, with Carrie insisting it’s important not to be defined by a diagnosis.
Soon after their nuptials, they welcomed their son Oliver, and breaking down in tears on the show, Carrie said: “[He’s] the greatest thing we ever did together. He’s a gorgeous boy and he’s so much like him in so many ways.”
She now gets reminded of her former husband every time she sees Oliver, especially when she catches a glimpse of the back of his frame.
Greg’s brave fight inspired her charity pledge, and while Carrie made history when she announced her work at the 2015 Logies, she admitted she very nearly changed her mind and even put the beanie she took on stage back under the table, as she was suffering with terrible nerves and anxiety.
It became a monumental success and while she said her initial aim was just to raise awareness, not money, it then went on to become a huge initiative involving some of the country’s biggest TV stars.
Meanwhile, her job means she comes across heartbreaking real-life stories every day as she interviews both celebrities and Aussies experiencing difficult times on The Project.
She’s often seen struggling with her emotions on screen, but Carrie insisted she’s sometimes unable to stop the tears, due both to the horrific stories she hears, and her own past.
Carrie has since moved on with Chris Walker and they have welcomed daughter Evie together, as well as expecting another baby in just a few months time.
Recalling the moment she found love again, Carrie admitted she wasn’t sure she’d ever have more children following Greg’s death, after suffering a particularly traumatic birth with her son, but wouldn’t change her decision for the world.
Her emotional revelations came as part of a huge tell-all chat with artist and comedian Anh, where she also discusses her parents’ divorce, her mum’s decision to move her to America for a year, and her incredible rise to fame.
Carrie Bickmore appears on the Anh’s Brush with Fame on Wednesday, August 8, at 8pm on ABC.