Laura Whitmore devastated as close friend dies from cancer aged 43

Laura Whitmore has shared her heartbreak following the death of her friend. The 38 year old TV presenter today sadly revealed that her photographer pal Jay McLaughlin has passed away following a battle with stage four cancer.

Former Love Island host Laura shared a moving tribute to Jay on her Instagram account today, along with a picture of him and images that he had taken of her throughout her career. Laura wrote: "I’ve spoken a lot about my friend @jaymclaughlin_irl a very talented photographer and his account @jaymclaughlin_irl documenting his life with stage 4 cancer.

"Sadly we have lost Jay. We had been preparing ourselves for the worst but you never fully comprehend it. He’s been part of and taken photos of so many stages of my life – shoots, BTS, headshots, birthdays.. not to mention our shared love of Star Wars.

"I know he was in a lot of pain near the end so I hope he is free of the restraints that his body had on him. Rest in power, he was a force who I am eternally grateful to have known #f**kcancer #restinpower."

Alexandra Burke also shared her condolences in the comment section as she wrote: "He was so special. Heartbroken he’s gone xx." Laura's husband Iain Stirling – who narrates Love Island – commented with love heart emojis, as did Emily Atack.

Anna Williamson wrote: "I am so sorry to hear this. Sending love", while Diana Vickers said: "Oh my goodness this is heartbreaking news. sending so much love xx."

Before his untimely death, Jay had been documenting his brave battle with cancer on his Instagram account. In a post shared today, July 20, Jay's partner Edina heartbreakingly confirmed that he had died on Wednesday.

The statement read: "James Scott McLaughlin who everyone knows as Jay. 27.12.1979 – 19.07.2023. Our brave and incredible Jay passed away peacefully tonight at St. Joseph’s Hospice and he is now in a galaxy far, far away.

"We don't really have the words right now, but we know how incredibly loved he was by all of you.

"The most amazing husband, son, brother and friend. Never giving up and fighting till the end, never lost his zest for life and sense of humor. Our love for him will never die and we will miss him everyday for the rest of our lives. May the force be with you always our love Jay! #foreverlove #willmissyou #ourlove."

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