May 26, 2013 03:30 PM
Angelina Jolie's aunt Debbie Martin, died of breast cancer Sunday at age 61.
While Jolie wasn't with aunt when she passed, the two had been communicating since Martin's diagnosis.
The news comes just two weeks after Jolie revealed she had a preventative double mastectomy.
Martin was the biological sister of Jolie's mom Marcheline Bertrand, who died in 2007 after a seven-year battle with ovarian cancer. When Marcheline discovered she had the BRCA gene, she urged Debbie to take the test that would determine if she, too, had the defective gene that puts its carriers at an extremely heightened risk of getting breast or ovarian cancer. When the test was positive, she had her ovaries removed but unfortunately she fell victim to breast cancer.
Jolie plans to continue her preventative surgeries, having her ovaries removed, according to a People magazine report. It's uncertain whether Jolie has held off on the surgery simply because she's been recovering from the three-month mastectomy process or because she and partner Brad Pitt are hoping to have more biological children first.