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'It was a horrible shock to be told I had cancer just days after I found out I was pregnant. But now I feel really positive about the future with my family . . .'

DAYS after discovering she was pregnant with her second child, RTE star Evelyn O'Rourke got the devastating news that she had breast cancer, the Herald can reveal.

The 2fm star told the Herald of how her delight for her pregnancy was tinged by sadness and "horrible shock" following her cancer diagnosis.

However, five months pregnant Evelyn (38) remains defiant in her battle against cancer -- and is fully confident she will beat the disease.

The mum-of-one, who is married to 2fm boss John McMahon, is undergoing treatment in St Vincent's Hospital. She now feels she has turned a corner and is starting to feel positive about her future after undergoing surgery to get the cancerous tumour removed.

"We discovered that I was pregnant in early June and very shortly after that I was diagnosed with breast cancer," she told the Herald.

"It was a horrible shock of course, but the medical team in St Vincent's is amazing and within days I had surgery where they successfully removed the cancer.

Confident

"I have been so impressed with the care, skill and compassion of every doctor and nurse I have met in St Vincent's during this time and at this stage I am feeling really positive about mine and my family's future," she added.

She went on to explain how she is extremely confident that she will make a full recovery from the illness.

Evelyn says she is looking forward to planning the rest of her life with her husband, and focusing on her son Oisin and their new arrival, who is due in early 2011.

According to the star: "Everyone at home and in work has been incredibly supportive to myself and John and thanks to advances and developments in cancer treatment, we can look forward to a long and happy life together.

"Now that the bad news is behind me, I am starting to get involved in all the excitement and organisation it takes to be a mum for the second time.

"I have loved being a mum to my son Oisin, so I am delighted that another baby is on the way -- I can change nappies in my sleep now," she laughed.

Since confirming the news last weekend, support has come flooding in for the brave mum-of-one.

Evelyn was a close pal to Gerry Ryan, who passed away suddenly in April.

She worked as a roving reporter on Ryan's radio show, and also worked alongside him on his hit TV series Operation Transformation.

The brunette broadcaster is now determined to beat the illness and return to her blossoming media career.

Challenging

"I have been enormously touched by the public support we received following Gerry Ryan's tragic death in April, and more recently by the huge support I have received from my family, friends and colleagues during this challenging time.

"I'd urge anyone with any health concern to go to their doctor as soon as possible -- because the earlier the diagnosis is made, the better the outcome is likely to be. I am living proof of that," Evelyn said.

lnolan@herald.ie


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