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28th May 2024

‘Loving you all so much’ – Westlife’s Shane Feehily shares health update months after stepping back from the band

Sophie Collins

Mark Feehily

Mark Feehily recently broke his social media silence to share an important update in his health journey

Mark, who turned 43 on Tuesday, took to Instagram to express his gratitude for the outpouring of support from fans and to reflect on his ongoing recovery.

Earlier this year, Mark announced that he would be stepping back from Westlife after undergoing surgery for a hernia. 

His return to social media was marked by a heartfelt message and an adorable video of his daughter Layla, singing happy birthday to him. 

“Loving you all so much,” Mark wrote. “I have been without social media apps on my phone for months now which has been really good for me just to take a break, but I do miss it and miss you all. 

“Whilst I am not yet back to 100%… I am doing better each week and just enjoying time with my family and loved ones, it’s a physical and psychological journey! I wish I was there with you at the concerts – I love you – hugs and kisses.”

Fans and friends flooded his post with supportive messages. “Happy birthday Mark! Get well soon!!” one fan wrote. 

Shane Filan’s wife, Gillian, commented: “Awwww she’s such a cutie! Happy birthday Mark.” Bandmate Kian Egan added, “Happy Birthday Mark. Sending you lots of love.”

Mark’s health struggles began in August 2020 when he underwent surgery that led to severe complications, including sepsis. 

This life-threatening infection resulted in an emergency surgery and a prolonged hospital stay, much of it in ICU during the Covid-19 lockdown, which prevented visits from his fiancé Cailean and their daughter.

Despite being discharged in December 2020, Mark faced ongoing medical issues. In late 2021, he fell ill again with pneumonia, missing concerts and undergoing additional surgery in May 2022. 

He attempted to return to touring but was forced to step back once more after developing a significant incisional hernia, requiring yet another surgery.

Reflecting on his journey, Mark expressed his deep gratitude for the support he has received: “Thank you so very much for your support and understanding of me and my health over the past few years. To my parents, brothers, close family and friends, thank you for the relentless support as always. 

“Thank you to my beautiful daughter for giving me constant daily motivation and inspiration to keep fighting through all of this and to get better asap and to my partner Cailean for being there through the most challenging of times.”

He also shared a message for his bandmates Shane, Kian, and Nicky: “I love you three and I know you’ll knock it out of the park. I’ll be there with you in spirit for each and every show whilst you continue to fly the Westlife flag around the world.”

Mark concluded with a heartfelt thanks to the medical staff who have supported him and reassured fans of his determination to recover fully: “I’m so devastated that I won’t be there to celebrate the upcoming concerts with you and the three lads. 

“But for now, I have to make the right decision for my health and wellbeing, for my family, and for myself as a person. Please don’t worry. Sending the most positive vibes in your direction, I will see you very soon beautiful people! WESTLIFE FOREVER! Love, Mark Feehily xx.”