Angelina Jolie doesn’t usually talk about her personal life, but on the 73rd birthday of her mother, Marcheline Bertrand, who died 15 years ago, she shared a picture of herself as a child with a heartfelt message on her Instagram page.
Bertrand died at the age of 58, and many of the women in Jolie’s family have these kinds of cancers.
At age 37, Jolie found out that she had a bad BRCA1 gene, which made her 87% more likely to get breast cancer and 50% more likely to get ovarian cancer.
After a number of tests, she chose to take precautions and have her organs taken out to save her life, even though it would mean going through early menopause.
Jolie told her story to show how important women’s health is and how important it is for those at risk to take preventive steps. She sees it as her job to help people who might get cancer, and she does this to remember her mother’s memory.
Jolie ended her message by telling women, especially those with a family history of cancer, to put their health first and get regular cancer tests.
Other well-known people, like Italian supermodel Bianca Balti and musician Laima Vaikule, have also talked about their cancer experiences and taken steps to avoid it.