Westlife star grants Northampton woman’s dying wish with surprise visit in her final hours

Popstar Shane Filan flew to the UK to meet Emma Clayson at her home in Great Billing on Friday - only hours before she passed away.
Popstar Shane Filan flew to the UK to meet Emma Clayson at her home in Great Billing on Friday - only hours before she passed away.
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A Westlife mega-fan from Northampton had her final wish to meet her favourite boyband member Shane Filan granted on Friday, only hours before she passed away.

Royal Mail worker Emma Clayson, aged 23,died on Saturday morning following a lengthy battle with skin cancer that had spread to her vital organs.

Last week her family launched a campaign to grant her final wish - to meet Westlife star Shane Filan, whom she had hoped to see perform in a solo show in Northampton next month before her condition deteriorated.

The #emmaswish4shane campaign was shared thousands of times in a matter of hours on social media and attracted the attention of the star’s management team.

Sadly Emma took a turn for the worse at the end of last week, but the big-hearted popstar agreed to fly to the UK from Ireland ahead of schedule to meet her at her Great Billing home on Friday.

The 36-year-old star spent an hour with Emma, signed autographs and gave her CDs and Westlife posters.

Emma sadly passed away on Saturday morning (February 27) just 18 hours after her surprise visit.

Her sister, Becky Clayson wrote on Facebook: “I am so heartbroken and lost. My Emma passed away peacefully yesterday morning at 9am at home.

“My amazing sister has been taken away from me too early!! I am so heartbroken.”

Yesterday Emma’s mum Mandy, 45, said: “Shane was wonderful. He sat with Emma and held her hand and chatted away like a member of the family.

“Emma had a huge smile on her face. It was the loveliest afternoon for her. She has always been a huge Westlife fan.

“She went to both their farewell concerts and even flew over to Dublin to see them without telling us. I only found out she’d gone when I found the tickets in her bag.

“She said ‘mum if I’d asked if I could go you would have said no and if I’d told you I was going you would’ve only worried.’”

After learning of Emma’s death, Shane tweeted: “Thank you to everyone who helped in making Emma’s last day a very happy one #RIPEmma.”

The family are now raising money for cancer support charity CLIC Sargent who treated Emma while she underwent treatment at Leicester Royal Infirmary.

To make a donation, visit www.clicsargent.org.uk.