Actress Nika McGuigan dies following 'brief but brave' battle with cancer

Actress Nika McGuigan dies following 'brief but brave' battle with cancer
Picture: Gareth Chaney Collins

Actress Danika 'Nika' McGuigan has died at the age of 33.

McGuigan's family confirmed the news this morning saying that she passed away peacefully in the early hours yesterday following a "brief but brave" battle with cancer.

McGuigan is best known for her starring role in RTÉ series, Can't Cope, Won't Cope.

A statement from her family, issued by the young actress's agency, The Agency, said: "It is with great sadness and heavy hearts that we share the news of the passing of our beautiful daughter and sister, Danika "Nika" McGuigan."

McGuigan was surrounded by her devastated family who have asked for complete privacy to allow them to grieve.

Nika's father is former boxing champion Barry McGuigan.

File photo dated of former world boxing champion Barry McGuigan and his actress daughter Danika in Dublin. Danika, who had been suffering from cancer, has died at the age of 33 following a short illness. Picture: Niall Carson / PA Wire
File photo dated of former world boxing champion Barry McGuigan and his actress daughter Danika in Dublin. Danika, who had been suffering from cancer, has died at the age of 33 following a short illness. Picture: Niall Carson / PA Wire

Sharing a photo of Nika, her brother Shane wrote on Instagram: "It breaks my heart to write this.

"My beautiful sister Danika lost her battle with cancer in the early hours of Tuesday morning, at the young age of 33.

She overcame it once with a 2 year fight when she was 11 to 13. Myself, my brothers and parents were privileged to have another 20 years since the first battle with our amazing Nika.

"Unfortunately Nika couldn't beat it again but she fought so bravely until the end.

I have memories that I'll cherish for a lifetime & you will live on forever in spirit. I'm so so proud of you!

"Love you forever my older 'little' sister."

In a statement this morning, The Agency said:

Nika was an incredible and versatile talent who lit up our screens with her undeniable presence, sensitivity and superb comic timing.

"We will miss her so much and our thoughts are with her friends and family at this difficult time."

Creator and writer of Can't Cope, Won't Cope Stefanie Preissner paid tribute to McGuigan sharing a picture of herself with the cast on Twitter.

She wrote: "Shocked and deeply saddened to hear of the untimely passing of Nika McGuigan - the brilliant, lovely, Danielle in Can't Cope Won't Cope wouldn't have been the same without her.

"Deepest condolences to her family and loved ones."

As well as playing Danielle in the popular RTÉ series, McGuigan also had roles in films such as The Secret Scripture and Philomena.

Most recently, she had wrapped filming on Cathy Brady's upcoming film, Wildfire.

People from across the Irish entertainment and boxing industries have been paying tribute to McGuigan on social media.

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