Joni Irwin bought her three children their 18th birthday presents and expressed her wish to die before losing her battle with cancer

Before his death, Johnny Irwin bought his three children 18th birthday presents and expressed his willingness to die for them.

The A Place in the Sun host died on Friday aged 50 after a three-and-a-half-year battle with lung cancer.

Jonny's grieving wife Jessica Holmes pleaded 'the boys and I need you' before saying 'goodnight' to her beloved husband.

The couple decided to keep Joni's terminal cancer battle a secret from their three young sons: Rex, five, and twins Cormac and Rafa.

But Johnny planned ahead and bought each of his three boys a special present to mark their 18th birthdays.

Joni Irwin bought her three children gifts for their 18th birthdays and revealed her last wishes on Friday before dying at the age of 50 after a battle with terminal cancer.

The couple's three sons: Rex, five, and twins Cormac and Rafa, two, were unaware their father was dying (pictured with mother Jessica Holmes in October 2023)

The couple's three sons: Rex, five, and twins Cormac and Rafa, two, were unaware their father was dying (pictured with mother Jessica Holmes in October 2023)

In 2023, Johnny said Hello! magazine: 'It pains me to think that the twins will not remember me. You hear people say: „I don't remember my father, he died when I was very young.”

He continued: 'I think about it and it breaks my heart because that's what I should be, really – a footnote in their lives. Therefore, I try to place the relics of my love on them.'

One of these relics was the Newcastle house where the boys lived with Rachel, which Johnny had bought outright to ensure his children had a debt-free asset.

In 2023, Joni expressed her wish to die.

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'I had a difficult upbringing and despite that, I've managed to do a lot in my life, but I don't want them to struggle,' she told Hello! magazine.

He wanted his children to have the confidence of those who went to fee-paying schools, but also knew how to roam the streets.

Johnny described his children as happy, always laughing and fun to be around. The hope for them is that they are surrounded by family.

Father grew up in Pittswell, Leicestershire, and attended Lutterworth Grammar School before starting his career as an estate agent.

He and Jessica decided not to tell their children about Johnny's diagnosis because Johnny wanted their last memories to be as genuinely happy as possible.

Johnny planned ahead and bought each of his three boys a special gift to mark their 18th birthdays.

Johnny planned ahead and bought each of his three boys a special gift to mark their 18th birthdays.

Jonny continued: 'I think about it and it breaks my heart because I should be, really - a footnote in their lives.  So, I try to keep monuments of my love for them' (pictured in 2023)

Jonny continued: 'I think about it and it breaks my heart because I should be, really – a footnote in their lives. So, I try to keep monuments of my love for them' (pictured in 2023)

One of these milestones was the Newcastle home where the boys lived with Rachel, which Johnny bought outright, ensuring his children had a debt-free asset (pictured in 2023).

One of these milestones was the Newcastle home where the boys lived with Rachel, which Johnny bought outright, ensuring his children had a debt-free asset (pictured in 2023).

In 2023, Johnny revealed his wish to die: 'I've had a tough upbringing and I've been able to do a lot in my life, but I don't want them to struggle,' he said.

In 2023, Johnny revealed his wish to die: 'I've had a tough upbringing and I've been able to do a lot in my life, but I don't want them to struggle,' he said.

Johnny's death was announced with a photo of him and Jessica, with a caption that read: 'It is with a heavy heart that we share the news of Johnny's passing.

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„A truly remarkable soul who fought cancer with unwavering strength and courage. Johnny touched the lives of many with his kindness, warmth and infectious spirit.

At this time, we sincerely ask for the privacy of Johnny's family as they navigate this profound loss.

'Their grief is immeasurable and your thoughts, prayers and support are greatly appreciated.

'As we remember the beautiful moments we shared with Joni, we celebrate a good life and a legacy that will forever be etched in our hearts. Johnny may be gone from our sight, but his love, laughter and memories will live on.

It ended: 'Be still, dear Johnny. You will be greatly missed but never forgotten.'

Jessica's tribute featured a photo of Jonny looking away and smiling and captioned: 'Goodnight is my favourite. Thanks for everything. I will always love you.

'The hard day has come, the day I prayed for will not come. I can confirm with all the sadness in the world that Johnny passed away earlier today.

Jonny's death was announced alongside a photo of him and Jessica: 'It is with heavy hearts that we share the news of Jonny's passing.'

Jonny's death was announced with a photo of him and Jessica saying: 'It is with a heavy heart that we share the news of Jonny's passing.'

It continued:

It continued: „A truly remarkable soul who fought cancer with unwavering strength and courage. Johnny touched the lives of many with his kindness, warmth and infectious spirit.

Jessica's tribute featured a photo of Jonny looking away and smiling and captioned: 'Goodnight is my favourite.  Thanks for everything.  I will always love you'

Jessica's tribute featured a photo of Jonny looking away and smiling and captioned: 'Goodnight is my favourite. Thanks for everything. I will always love you'

She continued: 'His magical brain, which had fought to the end, had now fallen asleep. He has given me more than I could ever ask for, 8 bonkers years of love and adventure and 3 wonderful boys.

'I will continue to make you proud, but only because your love will still find me and guide me throughout my life, me and the boys still need you. Joni you are truly the most beautiful person I have ever known and I am so sorry for this horrible ending.

'It's really not fair, you don't deserve this. You gave so much time to others, you touched everyone you met, and I have never experienced anything like the impact you had on people.

Jessica concluded: 'I love you so much and will always be proud of you xxx.'

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