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The fiancee of Buffalo Bills linebacker Tony Steward tragically and suddenly passed away this week after a short battle with ovarian cancer, and the football player posted a heart-wrenching photo on Instagram in her memory.
TODAY.com was unable to reach Steward or the Buffalo Bills for comment.
Brittany Burns, 26, was diagnosed with a rare form of ovarian cancer Dec. 9, according to Syracuse.com. She and her husband-to-be, who were engaged shortly thereafter, created the "Fight Like a Girl" campaign, which helps raise money (and awareness) for those with the disease. The two attended Clemson University, where they met; Burns was on the rowing team and Steward on the football team.
"Brittany Ann Steward!" wrote the 23-year-old NFL star in a moving Instagram caption alongside a photo of Burns smiling, adding his last name to her middle and first.
He continued: "You have the biggest heart I have ever seen in my entire life and I promise you that it will live on in me, our family and every single soul you have touched. You are the strongest and most loving soul to step foot in this world.
"You have been my rock, my motivation, my heart, my soulmate, my everything since the day I laid eyes on you. Every single day of your life you have been a fighter and I know this because of the unbelievable family you brought me into. "
Steward finished his emotional post with, "Love always, your fiance."
Unfortunately, it appears that Burns' sudden passing was unexpected. Just last week, she tweeted from the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania: "Thankful for the care at the hospital but I'm so ready to move on and start doing better from home."
The Buffalo Bills issued the following statement on the team's website Tuesday:
"The Buffalo Bills are saddened to learn about the passing of Brittany Burns, the fiancée of linebacker Tony Steward. From the day Brittany arrived in Buffalo with Tony, she was an active member in the community through the Buffalo Bills Women’s Association. Our prayers and heartfelt condolences go out to Tony Steward and the family of Brittany Burns during this most difficult time.”