Jockey Laura Barry has died at the age of 25, just two days before she was set to get married to her finacé Ben Hamilton.
The promising youngster was predicted for big things in the sport of horse racing but she had also been in a long-term battle with cancer which left her paralysed after being unable to recover.
It is understood she died Thursday night, July 12.
Best friend, fellow jockey Gemma Tutty, paid tribute to Laura on the Racing Post. She said Laura:
… was so tremendously brave and fought tenaciously right until the end.
We made memories together that will last a lifetime and I’m so grateful that racing brought us together. I couldn’t be prouder to call her my best friend.
An emotional Richard Fahey, who Barry used to ride for, labelled her as:
… a wonderful, wonderful person and she passed away with dignity. She was a super girl, just a super, super girl, and it’s so very sad for everyone.
It’s horrendous. There’s no good time for anything like that, but it’s extremely sad – she was due to get married tomorrow. She’s a girl I’m very proud to have known, she was a simply wonderful girl.
A 1st and 3rd in the opening race at Newmarket for an emotional Richard Fahey who paid tribute to his apprentice Laura Barry, who sadly passed away.
— Racing UK (@Racing_UK) July 13, 2018
Fellow rider Racheal Kneller wrote:
I can’t believe the awful news on Laura Barry.I honestly feel sick.Laura was such a positive person to be around and I have so many fun memories riding with her in the apprentice series over the cold winters at Wolverhampton.we will all miss you Laura.far too soon to leave us.
I can’t believe the awful news on Laura Barry.I honestly feel sick.Laura was such a positive person to be around and I have so many fun memories riding with her in the apprentice series over the cold winters at Wolverhampton.we will all miss you Laura.far too soon to leave us. 💔
— racheal kneller (@jockeyrach) July 13, 2018
Former champion jockey Paul Hanagan, who worked with Barry at Fahey’s, paid tribute to Laura, saying:
Everyone’s just devastated. Tony and his brother Ben are my best friends and they were obviously very close to Laura. Ben and her were supposed to be getting married this weekend and that only makes it even more sad.
I’d known Laura for years and you couldn’t really get a nicer girl. She was an absolute credit to herself and it’s incredibly sad. I feel for Ben, Tony and all the family.
I saw her last week at York, she was on her hen do and we went up to the box to see her and have a chat because I hadn’t seen her for a while. It says everything about just how tough she was, she’s been very ill for a long time but she was cheerful and putting a brave face on everything.
Hanagan added that Laura’s death:
… puts everything into perspective. You can get caught up in racing and moan about getting beat, the ground, or having a bad draw, but it’s nothing really.
From 2010 to 2014 Laura Barry rode 18 winners in a 193-ride career.
Our thoughts and condolences are with her family, friends and her fiancé Ben Hamilton at this incredibly difficult time.
If you’ve been affected by any of these issues, and want to speak to someone in confidence contact Macmillan’s Cancer Support Line on 0808 808 00 00 (Monday – Friday, 9am – 8pm).
If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677.
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