TWO friends have raised £2,000 and counting after taking the plunge in memory of a woman who died after a three-year cancer battle.

Kellie Rea passed away on April 1 this year, just hours after marking her 38th birthday, following a brave fight with breast cancer.

Kellie’s sister Elaine Cunliffe, 47, and friend Mandy Storozuk, both of Accrington, did a skydive to raise money for the charity which gave her a final family holiday.

Mandy, who runs The Spread Eagle pub on Blackburn Road, said: “Kellie was fun-loving, generous, kind-hearted, and always smiling throughout whatever life threw at her. She wouldn’t let the disease beat her and had a positive attitude, she was an inspirational lady.”

Former St Christopher’s pupil Kellie’s fight began in 2013, when she was first diagnosed and underwent a gruelling course of chemotherapy, followed by radiotherapy.

She was given the all-clear in July 2014, and went on to launch her own milkshake and smoothie business in Clitheroe. However, in early 2015, Kellie developed new symptoms and discovered the cancer had returned and spread. She underwent another six cycles, until a scan showed there was no longer evidence of the disease in her body.

In pain again, Kellie later had another scan and found the cancer had spread into her bones and organs and was resistant to chemotherapy.

She held a party for her 38th birthday at her home in Billington in the Ribble Valley on March 31, surrounded by her family, and passed away a few hours later.

Mandy added: “Kellie was a loving daughter who adored her mum. She was a fantastic sister to Elaine and loving auntie to Zak, Elaine’s boy.”

Mandy and Elaine, of Church Lane, decided to do the charity skydive for The Willow Foundation, which provides special activities for seriously ill adults and organised a week in Scotland for Kellie and her family. They took to the skies at Grange over Sands, watched and supported by Kellie’s mum Ellie Hill, of Church Lane, Clayton-le-Moors.

Mandy said: “The skydive for me was absolutely fantastic, I would love to do it again. We had clear blue skies and could see for miles. The adrenaline was surely pumping.”

They have raised around £2,000 in sponsorship to date, including £585 on their Justgiving page .