MAFS' John Aiken shares tribute after Mel Schilling's shock diagnosis

'We're all in your corner'.

Married At First Sight expert John Aiken has shared a heartfelt tribute to his co-star Mel Schilling after she revealed that she has been diagnosed with cancer.

Taking to Instagram on Wednesday, the relationship specialist posted a gallery of snaps of himself and Mel together over the years. Some photos showed the pair doing interviews together and attending red carpets, while the majority were taken on the set of the reality show.

MAFS’ John Aiken and Mel Schilling.
MAFS’ John Aiken has sent his well wishes to Mel Schilling after she revealed that she has cancer. Photos: Instagram/johnaikenlive

“Sending love and prayers to @mel_schilling1. Thinking of you and the fight ahead,” he wrote.

“We’re all in your corner.”

Several former MAFS brides and grooms have also shared their well wishes to Mel on social media, including Alyssa Barmonde, Janelle Han, Caitlin McConville, Ella Ding, Johnny Balbuziente, Cam Merchant and Sarah Roza.

“Sending you & your family all my love, strength & support ❤️” Tahnee Cook wrote, followed by Melinda Willis who said, “I’m so sorry to hear this Mel but if anyone can beat cancer it’s you! Sending you so much love and strength to both you and your family. You have an army supporting you ❤️”.


“So sorry to hear about this Mel. My grandmother used to say: Do your best and let God handle the rest ❤️ ” Mike Gunner shared.

“Sending you and your family love, you've got this Mel,” Domenica Calarco replied, while Bryce Ruthven added, “All the best with your recovery 🫶🏼”.

MAFS expert Mel Schilling hugging her husband Gareth and their eight-year-old daughter.
Mel Schilling shared a post on Wednesday revealing that she has cancer. Photo: Instagram/mel_schilling1

Mel's cancer diagnosis

Mel shared a lengthy post on social media on Wednesday morning telling her followers that she had been diagnosed with colon cancer.

“‘YOU HAVE CANCER’. Three little words that everyone dreads but no one ever expects to hear,” she captioned a photo of herself hugging her husband Gareth Brisbane and their eight-year-old daughter Madison.

“Last Thursday my consultant told me those 3 words.”

Mel explained that she had developed “severe stomach cramps” while filming the upcoming season of MAFS in Australia last month.

“I put it down to all the travel I’d been doing and the upset it caused to my system,” she wrote. “I saw my GP in Sydney and he put it down to constipation, gave me some laxatives and sent me on my way.

“Fortunately I knew something still wasn’t right so I booked in for a scan when I returned to the UK. On Thursday I was told I had colon cancer and in an instant my whole life changed.”

MAFS expert Mel Schilling.
Mel said she developed ‘severe stomach cramps’ while filming MAFS in Sydney last month. Photo: Instagram/mel_schilling1

'Incredibly blessed'

Mel went on to say that she and her family had planned to travel to Northern Ireland this week to spend Christmas with loved ones but instead, she will be undergoing surgery.

“Tomorrow morning I’m checking in to hospital to have an operation to remove a 5cm tumour in my colon, a tumour that had it gone undetected for much longer would have killed me,” she said, adding that she has named her tumour ‘Terry’.

“Despite this I feel incredibly blessed that it’s a cancer that is relatively easy to eradicate, I’m expected to make a full recovery though it’s a rough road ahead. I also feel so lucky to have an incredible support network around me, both personally and professionally, my own family and my TV family have been amazing these past few days.”


She ended her post by saying that although it will be “tough” spending Christmas Day in hospital, removing the tumour will be “the best present of all”.

“I just wanted to finish by saying that if something doesn’t feel right, please, please don’t ignore it,” she concluded. “And if you don’t think the answers you have got are right, keep going until you do, it might just save your life.”

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