Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 28 May 2016

Adele visits seriously ill Belfast fan Rebecca Gibney

By Angela Rainey

Published 01/03/2016

Adele performs on stage at the SSE Arena Belfast on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
Adele performs on stage at the SSE Arena Belfast on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

Adele has captured the public’s heart after surprising a terminally ill east Belfast child with a bedside visit.

The songstress, who was in Belfast starting her world tour, responded to an online appeal by Tracy Gibney to grant disabled daughter Rebecca’s wish of meeting the star.

Determined to get Adele’s attention, Tracy started an online campaign on change.org with the emotional plea: “I have a very sick daughter who has cerebral palsy, epilepsy, can’t walk or talk and is tube fed, she has recently became bed bound.

"She listens to Adele from she gets up in the morning until her bedtime. All I am asking for is for Adele to FaceTime wee Rebecca or send her a video message. It would be her dream come true, Please, please help me for my beautiful sick little daughter.”

Numerous emails were sent to Adele’s manager with no response. Then to the family’s surprise, the chart topper took time out from her sell-out concerts at SSE Arena, to visit disabled Rebecca at her Short Strand home.

Rebecca (12), who is blind was given just six months to live by doctor’ in December, but despite her tragic prognosis, her joy is ignited each day when mum Tracy plays Adele songs to her all day long. Her family say just hearing Adele’s albums lights up her face and her life.

Mum Tracy says she’s overjoyed about the visit.

“I can’t believe it, I’m just over the moon,” said the mother of three who is also a big fan.

“My daughter got to meet the person that she loved and that’s what I’ll always take with me for the rest of my life.

“Adele played with her hair, and held her hand and asked her all about Frozen. She was really lovely.”

Adele performs on stage at the SSE Arena Belfast on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
Adele performs on stage at the SSE Arena Belfast on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
Adele performs on stage at the SSE Arena Belfast on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
Adele performs on stage at the SSE Arena Belfast on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)
An Adele fan takes a selfie outside the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
Adele fan Adam Bazuin from the Netherlands pictured at the front of the queue outside the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - FEBRUARY 29: Adele merchandise promoting her opening Belfast show can be seen in a stall stationed outside the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Adele's highly anticipated world tour begins this evening with some news outlets reporting tickets changing hands for thousands of pounds. Adele made history recently by becoming the most succesful solo artist in a single year at the Brit Awards by winning four trophies. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - FEBRUARY 29: Adele fans make their way into the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Adele's highly anticipated world tour begins this evening with some news outlets reporting tickets changing hands for thousands of pounds. Adele made history recently by becoming the most succesful solo artist in a single year at the Brit Awards by winning four trophies. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - FEBRUARY 29: Adele fans make their way into the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Adele's highly anticipated world tour begins this evening with some news outlets reporting tickets changing hands for thousands of pounds. Adele made history recently by becoming the most succesful solo artist in a single year at the Brit Awards by winning four trophies. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - FEBRUARY 29: Adele merchandise promoting her opening Belfast show can be seen in a stall stationed outside the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Adele's highly anticipated world tour begins this evening with some news outlets reporting tickets changing hands for thousands of pounds. Adele made history recently by becoming the most succesful solo artist in a single year at the Brit Awards by winning four trophies. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - FEBRUARY 29: Adele fans at the front of the queue display their tickets as they wait outside the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Adele's highly anticipated world tour begins this evening with some news outlets reporting tickets changing hands for thousands of pounds. Adele made history recently by becoming the most succesful solo artist in a single year at the Brit Awards by winning four trophies. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - FEBRUARY 29: Adele fans make their way into the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Adele's highly anticipated world tour begins this evening with some news outlets reporting tickets changing hands for thousands of pounds. Adele made history recently by becoming the most succesful solo artist in a single year at the Brit Awards by winning four trophies. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - FEBRUARY 29: A programme seller holds up an Adele tour programme at a merchandise stall outside the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Adele's highly anticipated world tour begins this evening with some news outlets reporting tickets changing hands for thousands of pounds. Adele made history recently by becoming the most succesful solo artist in a single year at the Brit Awards by winning four trophies. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - FEBRUARY 29: Adele fans make their way into the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Adele's highly anticipated world tour begins this evening with some news outlets reporting tickets changing hands for thousands of pounds. Adele made history recently by becoming the most succesful solo artist in a single year at the Brit Awards by winning four trophies. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
BELFAST, NORTHERN IRELAND - FEBRUARY 29: Adele fans sing despite the rain as they wait to gain access to the SSE Arena on February 29, 2016 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Adele's highly anticipated world tour begins this evening with some news outlets reporting tickets changing hands for thousands of pounds. Adele made history recently by becoming the most succesful solo artist in a single year at the Brit Awards by winning four trophies. (Photo by Charles McQuillan/Getty Images)
Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Megan and Caroline Wright. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Kirsty Clinton, Mollie Clinton and Brian Clinton. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Seamus McAteer and Christine Rennick Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Andrew Callaghan and Lynne Callaghan celebrating their 12th Wedding Anniversary at Adele. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Mary Cononley and Gérard MacAllister Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Carly and Roisin Cheney. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Andrew Callaghan and Lynne Callaghan celebrating their 12th Wedding Anniversary at Adele. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Sophie Price, Andrew McClure, Alex Anderson Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Adele fan Adam Bazuin from The Netherlands pictured waiting to get into the SSE arena in Belfast for this evenings opening night of her World Tour and Adam also has a ticket from tuesday nights show. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
29-02-2016 Adele fans at the SSE Arena Belfast for the Brit Awards winner first night of her new tour. Niamh Murphy. Meabdh O'Grady and Brianna O'Grady. Picture Colm O'Reilly /Presseye
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
Fans of Adele(L-R) Nicola McKinney, Aisling Hill, Louise Hoy and Andrea Reilly from Lurgan patiently waiting to get into the SSE arena in Belfast for Monday's opening night of her world tour. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
Fans of Adele Joanne and Ted Addis from Belfast patiently waiting to get into the SSE arena in Belfast for this evenings opening night of her World Tour. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
Fans of Adele(L-R) Magan Truesdale,Jordain Gillen and Zara Truesdale from Belfast patiently waiting to get into the SSE arena in Belfast for Monday's opening night of her world tour. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 29/02/2016 Fans of Adele(L-R) Conal Love and Aoife Browne from Belfast patiently waiting to get into the SSE arena in Belfast for this evenings opening night of her World Tour. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 29/02/2016 Adele fan Adam Bazuin from The Netherlands pictured waiting to get into the SSE arena in Belfast for this evenings opening night of her World Tour and Adam also has a ticket from tuesday nights show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 29/02/2016 Fans of Adele(L-R) Niamh Murphy,Brianna O'Grady and Meadbh O'Grady from Belfast patiently waiting to get into the SSE arena in Belfast for this evenings opening night of her World Tour. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 29/02/2016 Adele fan Adam Bazuin from The Netherlands pictured waiting to get into the SSE arena in Belfast for this evenings opening night of her World Tour and Adam also has a ticket from tuesday nights show. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
PACEMAKER BELFAST 29/02/2016 Fans of Adele(L-R) Niamh Murphy,Brianna O'Grady and Meadbh O'Grady from Belfast patiently waiting to get into the SSE arena in Belfast for this evenings opening night of her World Tour. Picture By: Arthur Allison/Pacemaker Press
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
Fans, guests, and SSE Airtricity prize winners enjoy the pre-gig hospitality
Adele performs on stage during the 2016 Brit Awards at the O2 Arena, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday February 24, 2016. See PA Story SHOWBIZ Brits. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire
Adele performs on stage during the 2016 Brit Awards at the O2 Arena, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday February 24, 2016. See PA Story SHOWBIZ Brits. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire
Adele collects the British Single award on stage during the 2016 Brit Awards at the O2 Arena, London.PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday February 24, 2016. See PA Story SHOWBIZ Brits. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire
Adele wins the British Female Solo Artist award on stage during the 2016 Brit Awards at the O2 Arena, London.PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday February 24, 2016. See PA Story SHOWBIZ Brits. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire
Adele walks on stage to collect the award for MasterCard British Album of the Year during the 2016 Brit Awards at the O2 Arena, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday February 24, 2016. See PA Story SHOWBIZ Brits. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire
Adele arriving for the 2016 Brit Awards at the O2 Arena, London. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Wednesday February 24, 2016. See PA story SHOWBIZ Brits. Photo credit should read: Ian West/PA Wire

Kindhearted Adele also offered the family free tickets to see her concert which ran for two nights.

The unannounced arrival was a welcome surprise, not just for Tracy and Rebecca but for adoring fans across Northern Ireland.

After reading the shock news and seeing the pictures shared by Rebecca’s older sister Joanna on Facebook, heartfelt comments flooded in. Joanna posted: “My baby sister’s dream just came true, Adele came to visit her! So happy.”

Nuala Doherty commented: “That’s amazing, I’m so delighted for you all. Credit to Adele for making this sick child’s dream come true. xx”

Nicole McGrillen added: “This made me so happy! Over the moon for you, so glad she got to meet her xxx.”

The pictures were also posted onto Twitter by Sinn Fein councillor Niall O’Donnghaile, who added: “Thank you so much Adele for visiting the beautiful Rebecca in the Short Strand today. Made her and (mum) Tracy’s year!”

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