Real 'Fault In Our Stars’ wife dies from cystic fibrosis days after husband’s death

Katie Prager died due to complications from the disease and a lung transplant at the age of 26

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The Independent Online

The wife in the real “Fault In Our Stars” couple has died at the age of 26 from cystic fibrosis, just days after her husband died from the same disease.

Katie Prager died after developing complications related to the disease and after she received a lung transplant.

Her mother, Debra Donovan, wrote on Facebook that her daughter died in her bed, surrounded by family and dogs as she wished.

"The days to follow will not be easy but I find comfort in knowing that my girl lived, she really lived," Ms Donovan wrote.

The 26-year-old had been in a hospice in Flemingsburg, Kentucky, since 7 September.

Dalton Prager, her husband, died on Saturday of the same disease at the age of 25.

Katie wrote on Facebook that her husband had fought "a long hard battle".

"He was a courageous fighter and ‘give up’ wasn’t in his vocabulary," she said.

The couple bore a resemblance to the real Fault In Our Stars pair, featured in the 2012 book and 2014 film, where teenager cancer patients meet and fall in love.

Katie and Dalton Prager met on Facebook in 2009 when they were 18 years old, after she noticed Dalton’s mother had posted a picture of him in the hospital. Although their relationship developed through messages, Katie’s doctor warned her that meeting Dalton in person could be dangerous as he had an infection called Burkholderia cepacia, which could be deadly for cystic fibrosis patients.

Yet in August 2009 she met Dalton for the first time, and said she felt an instinct to hug and kiss him, as reported by CNN.

Dalton and Katie Prager in hospital (Facebook)

Two years after their first date at a funfair, they got married, bought a house and regularly had friends round to cook together and have game nights. The pair went traveling and remained healthy for several years.

But Katie did contract the infection. In 2014 they both got lung transplants, and Dalton developed lymphoma cancer, and was then diagniosed with pneumonia and a viral infection.

Katie’s transplant was not successful, and she went to a hospice earlier this month.

The last time they saw each other was 16 July for their fifth wedding anniversary, and had to communicate via FaceTime after that. 

Dalton was not well enough to fly to a hospital in Kentucky, and he died in Missouri.

The day before he died, she told CNN that the relationship with Dalton gave her the best years of her life.

"I'd rather have five years of being in love and just really completely happy than 20 years of not having anybody."

Her mother added on Facebook: “One important thing i have taken away from this is to live, just live...if there is something you want to do, don't wait. Life is short, love as hard as you can. 

"Katie knew how much she was loved. She knew how much I loved her, I told her and showed her everyday.

"We were given a great gift, we knew her time was short and she was able to do a few things that she wanted, and I am grateful for that."

A YouCaring page has raised more than $32,000 to help the family with funeral expenses.