Casey McIntyre, 38, knew she was going to die of ovarian cancer. So her last wish was to help eliminate other people’s medical debt.

McIntyre, a mother, wife, daughter and friend to many, wanted to be the one to deliver the news of her own death, recounted her husband, Andrew Rose Gregory, on Today.

“A note to my friends: if you’re reading this I have passed away. I’m so sorry, it’s horseshit and we both know it. The cause was stage four ovarian cancer,” McIntyre wrote via Instagram. “I loved each and every one of you with my whole heart and I promise you, I knew how deeply I was loved.”

McIntyre was a book publisher in New York City where she, Gregory and their 18-month-old daughter, Grace, lived.

On the social media platform X, McIntyre posted: “To celebrate my life, I’ve arranged to buy up others’ medical debt and then destroy the debt,” and included a link directing followers to donate to RIP Medical Debt, a nonprofit that uses donated money to pay low-income Americans’ medical bills.

Her message prompted hundreds of donations. With 5 million views and counting, it has raised $577,000, making it the most successful individual campaign in the charity’s history, according to the nonprofit’s Instagram page. 

After experiencing swelling of her abdomen, McIntyre was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2019, Gregory told Today. Doctors determined the source of her discomfort to be severe ascites, a buildup of fluid in the space between the lining of the abdomen and organs. Ascites develop in more than one third of women with ovarian cancer, according to the Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance.

McIntyre underwent various treatments, including chemotherapy, surgery and some experimental immunotherapies, according to Gregory. After a year and a half of no evidence of disease, McIntyre had to start treatment again in September 2021; she was released into home hospice in June 2023.

Gregory hopes his wife’s friends and loved ones find comfort in knowing they helped others eliminate their medical debt as McIntyre’s last wish.

“Her greatest gifts and joys were her ready and generous wit, her easy laugh, her devotion to her family and friends, and her astonishing determination and grit,” the campaign page reads.

Ovarian cancer accounts for more deaths than any other cancer of the female reproductive system, according to the American Cancer Society. About 19,710 women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2023 and about 13,270 women will die of the disease.

Signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer may include:

  • Abdominal bloating or swelling
  • Quickly feeling full when eating
  • Weight loss
  • Discomfort in the pelvic area
  • Fatigue
  • Back pain
  • Changes in bowel habits, such as constipation
  • A frequent need to urinate.

Experts warn that early signs of ovarian cancer can be vague and advise women to talk with their doctor about the possibility of ovarian cancer if symptoms persist.

To read more, click #Ovarian Cancer. There, you’ll find headlines such as “Actress Bridgette Wilson-Sampras Treated for Ovarian Cancer,” “CU Cancer Center Care Team Provides a Foundation for Healing for BRCA1-positive Patient” and “New Online Tool Allows Users to Quickly Assess Their Risk of Breast and Ovarian Cancer.”