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Andrea Corr: IPF took my mum so quickly

Andrea Corr, lead singer of The Corrs, talks about the memory of her mum.

Andrea Corr and mum

It’s nearly 15 years since I lost my beautiful mother, Jean, to idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF).

When she was diagnosed in April of 1999 it was called cryptogenic fibrosing alveolitis. Cryptogenic, like idiopathic, means not a lot is known about this disease.

Before this, she had been a healthy, happy non-smoker. She had a lust for life and an appreciation of the moment. She loved life, she loved daddy and she loved us. She was only 57 when she died - November of the same year. She didn't see the new millennium.

It still actually shocks me, writing this now, how devastatingly quick that was. I'll never be without the ache of her absence and sometimes I think I miss her more than ever now I am a mother myself. I named my daughter - my first baby - Jean, after her. I try to keep her alive.

The devastation of IPF

IPF is a devastating disease and I find it hard to understand how there is still no cure, 15 years after Mammy died of it. Many people have still never heard of it even though it kills 5,000 people a year in the UK.

I really hope that this World IPF Week people will come out in force and show their support to help raise the awareness and funds that are urgently needed for this disease.

I’ll be getting the family involved by getting them to blow bubbles, a symbol of solidarity for people affected by IPF. You can do the same and share your bubble-blowing photos on social media to help raise awareness.

You can also help fund research into IPF - donate online to our IPF appeal.

This week is World IPF Week - find out how you can get involved.


Andrea, I love you and your music and I am so very sorry for your loss. I cannot listen to the beautiful song 'Angel' -- so bravely upbeat -- as it always moves me to tears. I understand so perfectly how difficult it must me having children without your mother around, and wish I could help. My mother helped me a great deal with my own daughter, and I thank god every day I was fortunate to have her so long. My heart goes out to you, and I wish you all the best. Your music, my dear, has been the soundtrack of my life, and continues to be. I send good wishes and love from Canada.
Dolcissima Andrea, ci sono tante cose al mondo che noi non capiremo mai, nonostante gli sforzi e i successi che spesso otteniamo. Io sono impegnato nella ricerca per Alzheimer's Disease e quotidianamente assisto impotente al dolore che mi circonda. Ogni tanto si apre uno spiraglio, ma poi rimaniamo delusi. La cosa importante e lottare insieme alle persone e non arrendersi mai. Sono sicuro che qualche risultato lo avremo. Anche se da 15 anni soffri per la perdita di tua madre, sappi che migliaia di persone ti sono vicine e ti vogliono un gran bene. Tra queste ci sono anch'io. Spero che ció serva a ridurre un pochino la tua tristezza. Ti auguro molta fortuna per l'iniziativa. Se riuscrò farò anch'io una donazione. Ciao.
I lost my father to IPF too. I was ignorant (and partly in denial) about the illness, and it seemed the health system was (is?) too. More research is needed into its causes and treatment. It still shocks me also how my father was lost to it.
I remember reading about it when I was a teenager and I was shocked to realize we could lose a parent so quickly over a mysterious disease. My mom is now 56 and I can't imagine losing her now. A lot of work still needs to be done for IPF indeed.
I love Moya Brennan I met her in 2004 and Andrea Corr e-mailed me on bebo in 2008 thank you lady singer of Ireland
Hi Andrea, So sorry for the loss of your mother my heart goes out to you. I can't imagine how painful it must be. Thank you for raising awareness about this illness and speaking out about it. Much love, you and your family are in my thoughts, Maddie x
It amazes me that I have not heard of IPF. I was a hospice volunteer for years and thought I had heard of everything but then again I am dealing with my own unique illness. I can feel Andrea's pain, you never get over losing a parent too soon. Thank you Andrea for making us aware of this devastating medical condition.
So sorry for your loss. I too experienced the loss of my daughter to a fast moving illness (cancer), but like your song says, your mother is surely an angel. Your number one American fan, Michael
My dad died in 2005 at the age of 73 from lung cancer. I got "the call" from my brother whilst I was at work. I drove home crying to I'll stand by you on the radio. This can still turn me to tears after I've had a triple. I predict the Corrs have their best years ahead of them. White Light is there best album to date with a perfect ballence between the first track with its upbeat pop sound and track 8 and it's traditional Irish roots.

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30 September 2014