EDS Teen Meets Pop Star Ronan Keating, Gives EDS Presentation
Jodie got to spend some quality time with Ronan Keating while he sat beside her and played a special video she had produced.
U.K. Newspaper News & Star reports:
“Wide-eyed excitement greeted singing star Ronan Keating, when he met two very special Carlisle youngsters. The former Boyzone frontman was in the city to perform at the racecourse’s Ladies’ Night, but his ultimate billing came in the hours prior to last night’s gig.
Keating had agreed to a meet and greet two inspirational young people before posing for photographs with a group of mainly female competition winners.
Jodie Vasquez, 19, from Currock, was scheduled to meet the pop star but her health has worsened in recent months.
She has Ehlers Danlos Syndrome and her internal organs are failing one by one.
Jodie had previously met Keating in Newcastle, when he helped her present the Sick Children’s Trust with a cheque she had raised through various fundraising events.
Jodie’s health meant she was unable to travel backstage with the rest of the group and so the teenager was lucky enough to have her own private meet and greet in the Cancer Research awareness unit.
She told the News & Star before the meeting that she was hopeful he would recognise her from their previous encounter – and her wish was granted when Keating greeted her with a smile, a hug and a “nice to see you again”.
Accompanied by her mum Maxine Farish, Jodie spent more than five minutes sat beside the singer. During their meeting, he watched a special computer presentation Jodie had produced with her stepdad Steve about EDS.
When the slideshow opened with Keating’s famous When You Say Nothing At All, the star gave a cheeky grin and told Jodie: “Good song choice!”
Keating later raced backstage to meet the main group of eager fans.
Head of the queue was Ethan Tweedie, 10, of Dalesman Drive, Harraby, who was diagnosed with a brain tumour in 2008.
Keating took time to pose for photos, sign autographs and ask about Ethan’s health.
Ethan said afterwards: “It was so exciting.”
Screams echoed around the racecourse as more than 8,000 people gathered to watch Keating live in concert.
The threatened rain held off, as he performed old classics and new favourites and dedicated one song to Jodie Vasquez.
He also urged the audience to find out more about Jodie and her fundraising, describing her as “inspiring” and “amazing”.
After the concert, the star tweeted: “Amazing night @CarlisleRaces hell of an audience.”
Jodie’s Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome has not dampened her creative spirit.
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