‘Hello Emily, it’s Zayn here from One Direction’ - Bereaved girl’s dream comes true
- Credit: Archant Norfolk
When widower Rick Yallop sent out a Facebook plea to get his daughter a message from One Direction, he had no idea if anything would come of it
But his Facebook page was shared over 100,000 times, and now five-year-old Emily has a smile back on her face after losing her mother in September.
Emily's favourite member of the band, Zayn Malik, recorded a personal message to the youngster inviting her to meet the band after Mr Yallop's campaign was featured in the Evening News.
'I can't put it into words,' said the 42-year-old from Bignold Road in Mile Cross. 'I'm so excited for Emily, she so deserves it.
'I can't thank everyone enough, everyone who shared the page on Facebook, liked the page, all of Team Emily 1Dream. It's just blown me away.'
In the clip sent to Mr Yallop, Zayn said: 'Hello Emily, it's Zayn here from One Direction, heard you were a big fan so I just wanted to do this little message to let you know that I'm thinking of you, I hope you're OK and also just to let you know me and the boys want to invite you to one of the shows, so whenever you're available get in a car and come see us.'
Mr Yallop was contacted to say further details about meeting the band will follow, but until then, Emily has the video playing on repeat.
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'She went to school dressed like a princess, because she feels like one. That's what this has done,' said Mr Yallop.
Emily said getting the message was 'exciting', and told all her friends at Mile Cross Primary she was going to meed her idols.
The whole family benefitted from the support that flooded in via their Facebook page in the wake of Mr Yallop's campaign.
'It's not just about meeting One Direction, the support for what's happened to us and the amount of people who have been bereaved and sent us messages saying they're sharing our story is amazing,
'I can't believe people are sending us messages and helping us, just talking to people who are also going through it is helping.'
Mr Yallop said he will donate to Children In Need and encouraged everyone who shared his campaign to do the same in the hope of helping more children going through difficult times.