Twin sisters receive birthday cards from dad who died

The real-life P.S. I Love You! Twin sisters receive birthday messages from their dad who died from a brain tumour aged 34 after he left behind 30 years’ worth of cards

  • A dying father wrote birthday cards for his twin daughters for the next 30 years 
  • Nick Keenan, from Linfield, tragically died from a tumor at the age of 34 in 2020

Twin girls are receiving touching birthday messages from their late father after he left behind 30 years’ worth of cards for his beloved girls. 

In a touching gesture, Nick Keenan from Linfield, penned future birthday cards for his daughter Rose and Sophia, when they were just 17 months old.

The father-of-two was tragically dying from a brain tumor but wanted his twins to have birthday messages from his every year.

The girls recently opened their fourth birthday card from him, where he told them they’d start school soon and to look after each other.

He tragically passed away aged 34 in November 2020, nine months after being told his tumor had developed into a glioblastoma (GBM).

In a heartwarming gesture, Nick Keenan, from Linfield, wrote birthday cards for his twin daughters for the next 30 years, while dying from a brain tumor 

Sophia and Rose recently celebrated their fourth birthday where they both opened a card from their late father 

Nick’s wife, Victoria Keenan, conceived their twin girls through IVF treatment 

Nick was diagnosed with a tennis ball-size astrocytoma in 2015 after weeks of suffering with shooting pins and needles down his right arm.

He underwent two debulking surgeries, radiotherapy, infusion and oral chemotherapy, prescription cannabinoids and a number of natural remedies.

Nick’s wife Victoria said: ‘Nick was everyone’s rock, and very much mine.’

‘He was incredibly strong and went to work every day of his radiotherapy and chemotherapy, which I was inspired by.’

‘He also managed to support me going through IVF like any good husband would, even though he was going through much bigger things. It was never about him.’

‘He was consoling others as he was dying and he wrote our girls, Rose and Sophia, birthday cards for the first 30 years of their lives.’

‘He wanted to be with them in spirit as they celebrated their birthdays without him.’

‘Hopefully, it will give them a better idea of where he was at that stage in his life.’

Nick was diagnosed with a tennis ball-size astrocytoma in 2015 after experiencing shooting pins and needles down his right arm

He sadly passed away aged 34 in November 2020, nine months after being told his tumour had developed into a glioblastoma

Nick wanted his daughters to have birthday cards from him so he could be their in spirit on their special days 

Victoria, was at the gym when Nick returned from a business trip early and said he was going to hospital.

The 35-year-old said: ‘When I walked in the room and saw Nick had been crying, I knew that something was wrong.’


Glioblastomas are the most common cancerous brain tumours in adults.

They are fast growing and likely to spread. 

Glioblastomas’ cause is unknown but may be related to a sufferer’s genes if mutations result in cells growing uncontrollably, forming a tumour.

Treatment is usually surgery to remove as much of the tumour as possible, followed by a combination of radio- and chemotherapy (chemoradiation).

It can be difficult to remove all of the growth as glioblastomas have tendrils that extend to other regions of the brain. These are targeted via chemoradiation. 

Glioblastomas are often resistant to treatment as they are usually made up of different types of cells. Therefore, medication will kill off some cells and not others. 

The average survival time is between 12 and 18 months.

Source: The Brain Tumour Charity

‘They sat me down and told me they’d found a lesion the size of a tennis ball on the left side of his brain, in the middle of his frontal lobe.’

‘They said it was slow-growing and had probably been there since he was born.’

Nick’s surgery and subsequent radiotherapy and chemotherapy treatment went so well that he and Victoria decided to move forward with their plans to start a family.

Victoria said: ‘We just carried on with life as normal and thought we were winning, which is when we decided to go ahead with IVF.’

‘Then, in December 2019, when our girls were just six months old, Nick noticed his speech had become slurred.’

‘We contacted the doctor and ended up going back in after Christmas.’

‘I’d had a really weird gut feeling that it was going to be our last Christmas and so organized the biggest celebration by inviting everybody to come and stay with us.’

‘In March 2020 we found out his tumor had developed into a glioblastoma (GBM) and were told he probably had less than a year to live.

‘In fact, Nick lasted nine months from that GBM diagnosis.’

Nick underwent further treatment and was being considered for a clinical trial when he was told nothing more that could be done.

After becoming unconscious at home one night in November 2020, Nick was taken into a local hospice where he died the following morning.

Victoria said: ‘My parents dropped everything to look after the girls, who were sleeping, and I slept in a bed in the same room as Nick at the hospice, head to toe with his mum.’

Nick was told by doctors  in March 2020 that he probably had less than a year to live

‘I believe the last thing he remembered was being at home with his family. He never really knew he went into the hospice and died at 4am the next morning.

‘I came home at 6am, washed and carried on being mummy to our 17-month-old daughters, knowing that daddy wasn’t with us anymore.’

Victoria bought Nick a miniature dachshund puppy following his diagnosis. That pup, named Poppy, died six months after Nick did, also to a brain tumor.

‘I just couldn’t believe it; they were inseparable and I think she was sent to look after him so went with him,’ said Victoria, who is now urging people to sign a charity’s petition.

She is campaigning alongside Brain Tumor Research to help its petition to increase research funding reach 100,000 signatures, in the hope of prompting a parliamentary debate.

To sign and share the petition before it closes at the end of October 2023, go to

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