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Late Late Toy Show: Saoirse and Adam capture the hearts of nation as charity appeal raises over £4.6m


Saoirse Ruane pictured with her mum at The Late Late Toy Show 2020.

Saoirse Ruane pictured with her mum at The Late Late Toy Show 2020.

Saoirse Ruane pictured with her mum at The Late Late Toy Show 2020.

A little girl who captured the hearts of the nation on The Late Late Toy Show has been given a trip of a lifetime with her family to Disney World Florida.

There wasn't a dry eye in the house as Saoirse Ruane's dreams came true.

Saoirse, who is from Kiltullagh in Co Galway, told host Ryan Tubridy: "This night last year, Toy Show night, I had a pain in my ankle, so I went in to the hospital in Galway and they said I had broken a bone, so they put me in crutches and a cast."

Doctors discovered that Saoirse actually had a tumour, she later had to get her leg amputated and now uses a prosthetic.

She radiated positivity as she said that she has had three dreams during her recovery.

Her first was to appear on the Late Late Toy Show, which she ticked off her list last night.

She said her next goal was to be able to walk again by Christmas, which the inspirational girl demonstrated she can do.

She added that her third is to go on a family holiday.

Ryan proved to be the host with the most as he said: "This is a golden ticket dream, our good friends in Aer Lingus they want to make your dream come true, they're going to send you and your family on a week-long trip of a lifetime to Disney World.

"Aer Lingus will fly you all to Orlando and we'll provide you with accommodation and passes."

Saoirse was then joined on stage by her delighted mother, who said they will be thrilled to go on the trip when it is safe to travel again.

Dublin Airport has since Tweeted that they will offer Saoirse and her family complimentary use of their Platinum Services VIP facility when they are travelling.

Adam King (6) from Cork also stole the hearts of viewers as he talked about a handmade heart sign which offers virtual hugs while keeping a safe distance.

He was surprised by his favourite hospital porter, John Doyle, who he met at Temple Street Children's Hospital.

Adam said that he would like to be an astronaut and told the viewers about his brittle bones, prompting a reply from a real-life Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield.

"Adam - I’ve been lucky enough to CAPCOM many spaceflights. We should talk space together. Take care, be good - Chris," he wrote on Twitter.

"Keep looking to the stars young man. In the meantime, we'll reach out to our friends @NASA & see if they can't help bring your dreams a little closer," read a post from the Irish embassy in the US.

Little Adam's dad David also took to Twitter to express how much of an inspiration his son is.

"This day 6 years ago Adam came home from hospital for the first time. Back then we didn't know what the future would hold. He has surprised and inspired us at every single turn!

"Here's to the future and an exciting Christmas," he wrote.

Tubridy then added that instead of the usual Late Late Toy Show viewer competition, they were instead asking viewers to donate to an appeal to raise much-needed funds for various children's charities.

Half of the money raised will be shared among Barnardos, Children's Health Foundation and Children's Books Ireland. The other 50 per cent will be distributed by The Community Foundation for Ireland to various charities nationwide.

Tubridy said: "Every year on the Toy Show we are inspired by children across Ireland, with stories of hope, resilience and triumph over adversity. In this exceptional year, we have been moved by the generosity of the children of Ireland as they have looked out for one another and those less fortunate in their communities.

"Tonight on the Toy Show we launch this appeal to spread the Toy Show magic across the year to children who need it most."

By the end of the annual extravaganza, the appeal had already raised more than €5.2 million.

For more information or to donate please visit www.rte.ie/toyshowappeal, or call 1800 111 800