Samuel Johnson's 'heartbreaking' tribute to his mum

Marni Dixit
·Lifestyle & Entertainment Producer
·5-min read

Samuel Johnson has shared a 'heartbreaking' tribute to his mother in the form of a book called Dear Mum.

Dear Mum features a collection of letters from some of Australia's top celebs to their mums, some of the writers include Guy Pearce, Rebecca Gibney, Peter Helliar and many more.

Samuel Johnson has revealed he's written a book called Dear Mum as a tribute to his own mother who took her own life when he was just three. Photo: Facebook
Samuel Johnson has revealed he's written a book called Dear Mum as a tribute to his own mother who took her own life when he was just three. Photo: Facebook

Taking to the Love Your Sister Facebook page Sam wrote that his mother took her own life when he was just three years old. He added: "Mum left me a poem, handwritten."

The poem reads:

All the seas of joy,

Rise to sing for you boy,

Surge and swell, and roar.

All the seas of joy,

Sound wonderfully near,

Since you’ve been here.

"That was my mum," he wrote. "Some crazy poet lady who found life a most onerous undertaking. There exists only one photo of me and my mum, and that’s always ok because I have that poem, burnt into my heart."

Sam continued, speaking of how greatly his mother's passing affected his sister Connie Johnson, who passed away in 2017 after a battle with breast cancer after they started Love Your Sister.

Sam and his sister Connie, who died in 2017 following a battle with breast cancer, started Love Your Sister to raise money for cancer research. Photo: Facebook
Sam and his sister Connie, who died in 2017 following a battle with breast cancer, started Love Your Sister to raise money for cancer research. Photo: Facebook

"Connie felt mum’s suicide much more deeply," he wrote. "From a very early age, she determined to become a mum and to see her kids through. To do what our mum couldn’t. She was extraordinary. Connie became the mum our mum could never be, to two young sons. Now, like me, her boys are motherless. I spose all this has a lot to do with why I’ve curated this assembly of letters to mums. It’s called Dear Mum, it features every most notable notable I could lay my hands on, and it serves as a fitting homage to mums and the importance of them.

"It’s a cracking book. It celebrates mums. It raises money for cancer research. I put everything in on this one. And now I think of it, I’d like to dedicate this book to my mum. I suspect she’d be pretty puffy about this one. It’s a beautiful montage, for all kinds of mums.

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"Mothers Day looms. Fix that right here and now."

Facebook users shared their support for Sam with one user writing: "You are an amazing, selfless person. You have been through a lot but still remain humble. Your mum will be looking down proud. Don’t stop being the wonderful, generous person you are. I have just pre-ordered your book and can’t wait to read it."

"Oh Sammy! You manage to turn so much loss into so much love with every step you take," another added. "I'll be buying at least 3 copies of this book - 1 each for me, my mum and my gorgeous Nan. Nan turns 92 this year and you remind me never to take her (or my mum) for granted. I might get a copy for my sister too while I'm at it!"

Sam now works with his other sister Hilde on the charity. Photo: Facebook
Sam now works with his other sister Hilde on the charity. Photo: Facebook

"Your mum had a beautiful way with words," someone else shared.

What a wonderful keepsake. Your mum did the best she could. Just like all of us mums try to do."

Others shared their own stories of loss, with one user writing, "My mum also chose to leave this world early and I’m sure she took half of my heart with her. I miss her with every ounce of my being."

"My mum also took her own life," another wrote. "How brave - but how heartbreaking. I'm sure she didn't realise the devastation she would be leaving behind. Especially for us kids, even though we were adults. She didn't understand how much she was needed and loved. This sounds like a beautiful book Sam."

"My mum sadly took her own life too," someone else shared. "It also makes me determined to be the best mum I can to my boys. I will definitely be purchasing this book. Love your work and your honesty. You have a wonderful ability of sharing your story and helping others to share theirs."

"I’m a mum fighting breast cancer," another wrote. "On the hardest days you are my inspiration to keep going. You have created a village of love. Your mum would be more than a little puffy."

Sam and Connie started the Love Your Sister community to raise money for cancer research and "to remind every mum in the land to be breast aware".

The siblings' aim was to "stop losing mums to cancer" and raise $10 million. Sadly, Connie died before she saw Sam raise over $13 million for cancer research.

If you are concerned about the mental health of yourself or a loved one, seek support and information by calling Lifeline on 13 11 14, Mensline on 1300 789 978, or Kids Helpline on 1800 551 800.

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