Martial arts champion loses mother to cancer

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World taekwondo champion Sarah Stevenson has lost her mother – just a few months after her father died.

The 28-year-old Doncaster star who is widely tipped for a gold medal at the London Olympics next year revealed that her mother had died from cancer, just three months after she lost her father to a brain tumour.

Diana Stevenson died at St John’s Hospice in Doncaster on Wednesday. She was 63.

The sportswoman is a 2008 Olympic bronze medallist and a two-time world champion, winning her latest title in South Korea in May.

In a statement she said: “My mum, Diana, passed away after a very brave and determined battle with cancer.

“Her family were at her bedside at the St John’s Hospice in Doncaster where she spent her last couple of days. She has shown amazing strength over this past year but now she has no more pain and is reunited with my dad Roy, her soulmate.”

On her website, Stevenson vowed to use their strength as her inspiration.

“It’s difficult but I’m lucky that I’ve got a great psychologist and we work really hard,” she said. “I get a lot of support and skills to try to cope with it.”