Emily's Melanoma
Risk calculator

Emily's story


Emily Vesna Tapp
(nee White)
30/5/1979 - 22/6/2006

In early 2005, Emily was a vibrant young 25 year old enjoying life and living in the heart of Richmond with her partner Aaron Tapp. She worked at Expo Group, loved to socialise with her and Aaron's wide circle of friends and treasured her family, but most of all she adored her time with him.

She was in love. She was loved. She was happy.

Aaron point out a changing mole on the back of Emily's arm and urged her to get it checked out, which she did immediately. The news was devastating - the mole was a nodular melanoma. Doctors worked quickly to remove the mole as well as a number of lymph nodes under Emily's arm. The relief was overwhelming when she was given the all clear. She felt thankful - she had a second chance.

Over the next six months, Emily and Aaron made plans to move to Brisbane for a couple of years to be closer to Aaron's son, Ryley. While happy for her, it was with great sadness her close friends and family said goodbye, and she headed to Brisbane in February 2006. There were plenty of plans to visit, but one thing was clear - Emily would be greatly missed.

Just over two months after arriving in Brisbane, Emily found a small pea-sized lump under her armpit while she was taking a shower. Immediately, panic set in. She already had a referral from her Melbourne doctors for regular check ups while in Brisbane, so she quickly made contact with the local doctors.

Emily did not have a second chance after all. The cancer had spread. What followed included an operation, radiotherapy, the introduction of an organic diet and a supposed short trip to hospital, which never ended. Emily celebrated her 27th birthday in hospital, as well as her wedding.

In mid June, around 50 of Emily's closest friends and family flew in to Brisbane. Emily was baptized and Aaron proposed in the chapel of the Mater Private Hospital, then 5 days later, on the 16th they were married at the hospital's roof top verandah and just days later, on 22nd June 2006, Emily left us.

It is imperative that others learn from these events. The awareness and early detection is simple and the consequences of non-detection are disastrous.

Emily Vesna Tapp
(nee White)
30/5/1979 - 22/6/2006

Much loved wife, daughter, sister, stepmother and amazing friend.

This calculator was made possible by generous support from Emily's Foundation emilysfoundation.org.au