Simon Cowell's tribute to 'special girl' who lost tumour battle
Simon Cowell has paid tribute to a "very special little girl" who lost her battle with a brain tumour just days after fulfilling her "big ambition" to sing for him.
Five-year-old Bethany Fenton, who performed Twinkle Twinkle Little Star for the Britain's Got Talent judge on Saturday, died with her family at her side.
Brave Bethany, from Fairford, near Cirencester, fought the illness for over a year and had been through radiotherapy and chemotherapy.
Her mother Jemma and father Sean, a PE teacher, were said to be "devastated" by her death. Cowell's spokesman Max Clifford said: "He is really upset, he said what a beautiful little girl she was. He is just so sad, and sad for the whole family. She was a very special little girl and Simon was so touched when she sang for him.
"He was happy that he was able to do a special something on Saturday night to give her a few precious moments but it is so sad and his heart goes out to Bethany's mum and dad and he is thinking of them."
Family spokesman Robin Thompson said: "They came back from Britain's Got Talent on Saturday. On Sunday she was fine, she was absolutely over the moon with what happened. On Monday morning she started being very poorly and the illness went on throughout the night."
He said she was taken to the John Radcliffe Hospital, in Oxford, where she died. Mr Thompson added: "Her dad said that she had done what she always wanted to do, meet Simon Cowell and sing to him. She had achieved her big ambition and was now ready to depart this earth."
In the special trip at the weekend, Bethany sang to Cowell before meeting the Britain's Got Talent finalists. She was introduced to street dancers Twist and Pulse, Janey Cutler, a singing grandmother, and teenage drummer Kieran Gaffney. Bethany was diagnosed with Grade 3/4 Anaplastic Astrocytoma early last year. Tests later showed the tumour was inoperable and her family worked to raise funds for other possible treatments to prolong her life.
Tributes are already being posted on the Bethany Appeal's Facebook group. The family includes three other children - younger daughter Millie, two months old, Gracie, aged two, and Mr Fenton's son Louis, aged 10, from a previous marriage. Speaking after the trip to Britain's Got Talent, the Gloucestershire Echo reported a delighted Bethany saying: "I loved them all, especially Kieran, who asked for my wristband to give us both luck. Simon let me sing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star to him. He's so nice and I love him."