A TEENAGER who has battled cancer for more than three years has met her musical idols thanks to a charity initiative.
Gina Easton, 16, has relapsed Hodgkin’s lymphoma and as a reward for battling the disease so bravely, her parents arranged for her to meet boyband One Direction.
She even treated the group to some local treats, including Irn-Bru and Tunnock’s Tea Cakes.
The Livingston girl was taken down to London by charity Rays of Sunshine and was given VIP treatment as well as meeting the five band members, who she describes as her musical idols.
Diagnosed at only 13, Gina responded well to chemotherapy and radiotherapy, and her health appeared to be showing optimistic signs.
However, the condition returned in November 2009 and, although she is currently in remission, doctors are keeping a close eye on her with regular scans and check-ups.
Her mother, Lesley, contacted the organisation to see if it could help fulfil her daughter’s dream. She described her as someone who “always puts the feelings of others before her own”.
She was introduced to the band – Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson – and had her photograph taken with them as they chatted and gave her autographs.
After the dream meeting, they were taken by limousine and treated to lunch at a top London restaurant.
She said: “Words can’t describe how happy I am after my wish. It was one of the best days of my life.
“The boys were so lovely and took time to chat, sign posters and get pictures.
“All the boys loved the bottles of Irn-Bru and tea cakes I brought them from Scotland.
“I can’t thank Rays of Sunshine enough, my cheeks still hurt from smiling so much and I wish I could rewind and do it all over again.”
Rays of Sunshine is set up to provide youngsters aged between three and 18 who are suffering from serious illness with meetings or holidays which they would not otherwise get.
The family, including father Peter and sister Helen, got to spend the night in the Millennium Hotel in Mayfair.