Diem Brown, famed reality star of MTV’s “Real World/Road Rules Challenge,” who openly spoke about her battle with cancer and regularly supported Super Saturday, the Hampton’s premier summer shopping bash which annually raises millions for ovarian cancer research, passed away on Friday, November 14, 2014 in a New York City hospital. She was 32.
Diem was first diagnosed with ovarian cancer at 23-years-old, and then again in 2012. After collapsing on the set of MTV’s “The Challenge” in August, she announced that she had been diagnosed with cancer for the third time, and underwent emergency surgeries to remove a tumor blocking her colon.
“She’s a fighter,” Brown’s sister, Megan Brown, told “People.” “It’s definitely an uphill battle, but I know if anybody can do it it’s her.”
Last month, Diem, who founded MedGift, a support registry for medical patients, revealed that the cancer found in August had spread to her liver and lymph nodes, news that she told “People” was “a shocker.” Although Diem said she was “blown away,” she never lost hope for surviving what she called “the roller coaster of recovery.”
“I NEED prayers and advice, my doctors are seemingly giving up but I won’t & can’t roll over,” the reality star tweeted to her 194,000 Twitter followers on Tuesday, November 11, 2014. “Whatever option I have to LIVE I’m grabbing!”
Diem was scheduled to undergo additional chemotherapy next week, but on Thursday, November 13, 2014 decided to forgo treatment. “In the end, there is nothing they can do. It just became so aggressive, so fast,” Diem’s friend Julie Rotondi said to “People.” “The cancer was just multiplying at such an aggressive rate that nothing could keep up. Any treatment that could have maybe prolonged [her life] for a week or two and it would have been a horrible, horrible ending.”
In a statement, MTV said they are “tremendously sad” over Diem’s death. “We send our deepest condolences to her family and friends. Diem was a true fighter and brought passion to everything she touched.”
According to Diem’s family and friends, her spirits remained high till the very end, and, she will forever be remembered as a survivor, because of her love for life and her ability to keep her smile and sense of humor through it all. She was a fighter with inspiring perseverance.
“No matter what it is, you’re going to have the bad days, but if you have hope throughout, you won, no matter what the results,” Diem told “People” last month. “Life is so beautiful.”
In her perfect life, Brown hoped, “I’m going to have a family and get married and the whole American, 2 ½ kids, white-picket fence dream.”
Cancer tragically took that dream from her, but it also lead her to inspire thousands with her everlasting positive energy. Diem’s legacy is sure to live on through the hearts of survivors and supporters around the world. After finding out about her death, fans took to Twitter to pay their respects. One described her as “a beautiful, graceful fighter,” and another remembered their favorite Brown moment “when she removed her wig on the Challenge.”
Just after Diem’s death, the hospital fire alarm went off and her loved ones said they knew it was her. “There were strobe lights, and it was so loud – like a dance club,” Rotondi said. “All of our hearts stopped. It was classic Diem. She was up there having her dance off. It could not have been more fitting.”
Although Supper Saturday and summers in the Hamptons may never be the same without her, we can only hope that Brown will be dancing over us.