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'Very Tough' Boxer Barry McGuigan says he'll 'never be the same' after daughter Danika's death

"I lost my daughter two years ago and it’s been shocking. I'll never recover from it. My life will go on but I’ll never be the same because family means everything to me."

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Barry McGuigan and daughter Danika

Barry McGuigan and daughter Danika

Barry McGuigan and daughter Danika

Barry McGuigan has said that he’ll “never recover” from the death of his daughter Danika in July 2019.

The boxing champion opened up about Danika’s short battle with cancer on a recent episode of The Tommy Tiernan Show.

Rising star Danika, who was also known as Nika, was best known for her roles in Can’t Cope, Won’t Cope and drama thriller film Wildfire, for which she won a posthumous IFTA Award.

She passed away aged 33 on July 23rd, 2019.

Speaking about his beloved daughter’s death, Barry fought back tears as he said that his life would never be the same again.

“I lost my daughter two years ago and it’s been shocking. I'll never recover from it. My life will go on but I’ll never be the same because family means everything to me.

“She was such a great kid. She had a tough life all her life. She had fever convulsions at nine months; she was dead on arrival at the hospital and they got her heart going again; she had leukaemia at 11, they said she would never get through it and she got through it.

“I’ll never recover from that. That’s the most shocking thing – to lose your child is just... I lost my brother; he committed suicide at 34. My dad died at 52. My sister died just last year. And they’re all bad, and Dad was very difficult to get over and Dermot was particularly bad, but losing your child is just the most shocking thing.”

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Barry McGuigan on The Tommy Tiernan show (RTE)

Barry McGuigan on The Tommy Tiernan show (RTE)

Barry McGuigan on The Tommy Tiernan show (RTE)

Barry explained that Nika died just over a month after complaining of pains in her stomach.

“It just happened like that. She’d been working on a movie with Cathy Brady and we didn’t know there was anything wrong. Then she complained about pains in her tummy and we’d done bloods at the end of April and they all came up clear,” he said.

“And then in June, she said that these pains had gotten too bad and she said, ‘I’m just going to go in and get checked myself.’

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“And then all hell breaks loose – right into the hospital, into the doctor, and all the bad news. She died five weeks later. Just like that. It was just shocking. It was a shocking, horrible time.”

The Monaghan native said that he still struggles with grief every day.

“I get very upset about it. I try my best not to. I think, ‘I don’t want to cry again.’ But, yeah, tough. Very tough.

“If this had happened to me during my career, I could never have continued with that. I don’t know if I could have recovered from that as a fighter.”

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