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08th Mar 2022

Charlie Bird to light a candle for “soulmate” Vicky Phelan at top of Croagh Patrick

“Vicky, you are in my thoughts every day.”

Charlie Bird has expressed his sadness that Vicky Phelan will no longer be able to wave him off as he embarks on his Croagh Patrick climb.

On Monday, Vicky announced that, due to her deteriorating health, she would not be able to attend the #ClimbWithCharlie event.

Charlie has now responded by saying he will light a candle for her once he reaches the summit.

Taking to Twitter, he wrote: “So sad that Vicky Phelan won’t be able to wave me off on the 2nd April when I start to climb Croagh Patrick, she has told me she will be with me in spirit – Vicky you are in my thoughts every day.

“When I get to the top the first candle I light will be for you Vicky, my soulmate.”

The former RTÉ broadcaster announced his plans to climb Croagh Patrick last year on The Late Late Show, following a previous appearance where he had discussed his Motor Neurone Disease diagnosis.

At the time, Vicky had tweeted her support for her friend and said she would take part. Unfortunately, as she deals with the side effects of radiotherapy treatment, this is no longer possible.

Updating her followers on Monday, the cervical cancer campaigner explained how she had been feeling following her treatment, which she is undergoing to help relieve severe pain caused by a tumour on her spine.


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A post shared by Vicky Phelan (@vickykellyphelan)

“I have NEVER been so sick or in as much pain as I have been over the past two weeks!” she wrote.

“The radiotherapy increased the amount of pain I was in and also incapacitated me leaving me unable to walk without assistance.

“I am only now, in the past few days able to walk without either a 4-wheeler or a Zimmer frame. Walking long distances is still beyond me but I hope I will get there again.

“I only finished my last session of radiotherapy last Monday and it can take a couple of weeks for the effects to be felt so I am really hoping that I will be moving around a bit more freely in a couple of weeks time but I am also acutely aware that I may never regain what I had…”

She added that she will continue to take a break from social media as her focus is now on spending quality time with her loved ones.