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Susanna Reid sends 'enormous love and support' to Nikki Grahame's family and friends after Big Brother star's death

SUSANNA Reid sent her love and support to Nikki Grahame's family and friends in a heartfelt tribute on today's Good Morning Britain.

The Big Brother star died on Friday aged just 38 following a lifelong battle with anorexia.

Speaking on today's show, Susanna said: "I think it has caused real shockwaves and has really highlighted a very important issue about eating disorders, how seriously they must be taken.

"I know her friends had really rallied around to try and help her. We send our enormous love and support to Nikki’s friends and family. I can’t imagine what you’re going through right now."

Kate Garraway added: "Horrific."

Susanna the continued: "It’s absolutely raised a lot of issues for people and those discussions are really, really important. Our love to all of you dealing with that loss."

Nikki checked into a private hospital to treat her eating disorder last month after her desperate friends managed to raise more than £65,500 to start paying for life-saving care.

However, her passing was confirmed in a statement on her GoFundMe page.

It read: "It is with great sadness, we have to let you know that our dear friend Nikki passed away in the early hours of Friday 9th April.

"It breaks our hearts to know that someone who is so precious was taken from us at such a young age. Nikki not only touched the lives of millions of people, but also her friends and family who will miss her immensely.

"We would like to request privacy at this difficult time, while Nikki's friends and family process the sad news.

"Full details will be released as and when we know them."


It continued: "All donations have been greatly appreciated and it was heartwarming for everyone including Nikki to see how much she was loved."

Nikki's rep Freddie White also said in a statement: "It is with immeasurable sadness that Nikki Grahame passed away in the early hours of Friday 9th April 2021. Please respect the privacy of Nikki’s friends and family at this tragic and difficult time."

Following the news, tributes immediately started pouring in for Nikki – who rose to fame on the 2006 series of Big Brother from her fellow contestants, reality stars and celebrities who had met her.

Katie Price, 42, revealed her heartbreak that she had missed Nikki's final voice message to her before her tragic passing.

Her sad death comes after her haunting last Instagram post where she admitted she "seriously can't deal" with another lockdown.

Meanwhile Nikki’s mum Sue appeared on This Morning last week and said her daughter's health battle was sparked when gyms closed during lockdown as the star dreaded eating if she couldn't exercise.

She said: "With Covid, it sounds crazy but stuff like gyms closing impacted her.

"In order for her to eat she needs to know she can exercise, so when they closed it was quite a worry, the isolation as well.

"I asked her if she would come and stay with me but she said she needs to be in her home."

"She was (suffering terminal loneliness) she felt very cut off and spending too much time on her own with not enough to think about other than food.

"It all came to a grinding halt. Also for Nikki, she would muddle herself through the year knowing she's got friends abroad and she would visit them.

"She spent a lot of time last year cancelling holidays."

Sue said she had a message for her daughter’s fans: "I heard from Nikki this morning and she said, 'please stress how overwhelmed I am at people's kindness towards me. I am so grateful.'

"But she said 'also tell everybody I'm going to try my level best to beat this'."

Nikki's mum also shared the moment she realised "something was wrong" with the star aged just seven years old, when they headed out for dinner as a family on Mothering Sunday.

She said: "We had a lot of stuff going on. You know, my dad got very sick and of course that affected me and I think she was worried for me and I tried to put on a brave face.

"We had other things going on, my marriage broke up and my husband had struggles at work so I know (our home) wasn't a happy place.


You’re Not Alone

EVERY 90 minutes in the UK a life is lost to suicide.

It doesn't discriminate, touching the lives of people in every corner of society – from the homeless and unemployed to builders and doctors, reality stars and footballers.

It's the biggest killer of people under the age of 35, more deadly than cancer and car crashes.

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Yet it's rarely spoken of, a taboo that threatens to continue its deadly rampage unless we all stop and take notice, now.

That is why The Sun launched the You're Not Alone campaign.

The aim is that by sharing practical advice, raising awareness and breaking down the barriers people face when talking about their mental health, we can all do our bit to help save lives.

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"One point stands in my mind. She was seven and we went to a restaurant and Nikki stood beside me, she wouldn't actually sit, she was just beside me and it was around that time that I noticed, she started refusing to eat, that's the one thing that stuck in my mind."

The fundraiser's target was initially £25,000, with big-hearted celebs including Rylan Clark-Neal, Michelle Visage, and Vanessa Feltz each donating £500.

Nikki's representative told The Sun at the time: “It is with sadness that we can confirm Nikki’s battle with anorexia has worsened in recent months and those closest to her are doing everything they can to assist with her recuperation, most notably in the form of a Go Fund Me page.

"We are confident Nikki will be able to make a full recovery and she would personally like to thank everyone for their kind words, wishes and donations today and beyond.”

Helplines on eating disorders and body image

For help and support on eating disorders and body image, you can call Beat Eating Disorders.

Their adult helpline is 0808 201 1677. The youth helpline is on 0808 801 0711

Nikki's friends desperately tried to raise the cash as they believed a specialist clinic was her "last hope".

Her pals Carly and Leon explained on the fundraiser page: "Over the past years Nikki's family and friends have tried so desperately to get Nikki all the help possible through the NHS but unfortunately the treatments have failed and we have exhausted every avenue possible, and now Nik is unfortunately in a very bad way, this is now our last hope.

"At the moment, Nikki constantly feels weak and is struggling on a day to day basis," they wrote.

"She feels trapped and really wants to get better but feels like it’s impossible. It’s heart-breaking and we desperately just want a healthy and well Nikki back with us.

"She has no energy and is taking each day as it comes."

Nikki had been open about her anorexia battle since finding fame in Big Brother back in 2006, releasing autobiography Dying To Be Thin in 2009.

She has been fighting the illness since she was a child, and was first admitted to a psychiatric hospital at the age of 12 following a suicide bid.

At one point, Nikki had to be force fed through a nasal tube after she starved herself.

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