Neil Hanvey, World's Biggest Star Wars Fan, Dies of Cancer

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Neil Hanvey, considered by many to be the biggest Star Wars fan on the planet, has finally lost his battle with cancer.

He was 36 years old.

Neil Hanvey

Hanvey, who was diagnosed with the disease three and a half years ago, passed away on Monday, just two days after having his latest wish fulfilled:

He was fortunate enough to attend a special screening of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, months prior to its December release.

The movie buff's family had initiated a worldwide social media campaign in order to make this dream come true for Hanvey.

"On behalf of Neil Hanvey, his wife Andrea and all his family, we want to thank everyone who supported the #RogueOneWish campaign," St Michael's Hospice in England wrote in a Facebook post on Monday.

"The director of Rogue One, Gareth Edwards did all he could to make Saturday a very special day for Neil.

"Neil, his family and everyone at St Michael's Hospice would like to say thank you to Disney, Lucasfilm and especially Gareth Edwards."

The #RogueOneWish campaign, which kicked off in April, generated a tremendous amount of support online, including retweets from Star Wars actor Mark Hamill.

On Tuesday, Hanvey's wife released a statement of gratitude, thanking those who had helped turn her husband's wish into a reality.

She has set up a crowdfunding campaign to raise funds for St. Michael's as well.

"On behalf of all our family we would like to thank everyone who has passed on their condolences following Neil’s death last night," she said in a statement to St Michael's.

"We would also like to thank the tens of thousands of people who supported the #RogueOneWish campaign. All the messages of love during the past week have given us a great deal of comfort during a very difficult time.

"We would also like to thank everyone at St Michael’s Hospice, especially Amy Duncan, without who #RogueOneWish would not have happened.

"All donations at Neil’s funeral will go to the Hospice’s Family Support team and will be used to fund work with children and young people."

Last year, a terminally ill fan named Daniel Fleetwood was granted his wish to see Star Wars: The Force Awakens prior to its global release.

In 2013, director J.J. Abrams made a similar dream come true for a very sick fan of Star Trek in regard to Into the Darkness.

Rogue One - the first of many planned Star Wars spinoffs - hits theaters on December 16.

It stars Diego Luna, Felicity Jones, Forest Whitaker, Mads Mikkelsen and Ben Mendelsohn.

We send our condolences to the family of Neil Hanvey and his loved ones.

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