Vicky Phelan and Charlie Bird share laughs and tears as they meet in person

Bird was recently diagnosed with motor neurone disease
Vicky Phelan and Charlie Bird share laughs and tears as they meet in person

CervicalCheck campaigner Vicky Phelan has met former RTÉ journalist Charlie Bird and his wife, Claire, in Limerick.

The meeting came following Bird's emotional appearance on Friday's edition of The Late Late Show, which prompted Phelan to reach out.

Bird was recently diagnosed with motor neurone disease and spoke about the impact of the illness on his life.

“Every day is the same for me, I make no bones about this — I cry every day because of what happened to me," he told presenter Ryan Tubridy.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KP0e_QpjDTc

“It’s not just my voice, every time I sit down to eat I’m struggling. Thankfully I can still walk, but other people with motor neurone can’t walk, I still can.

"When I wake up in the morning and I’m lying in my bed, I think for one moment maybe this is all a dream. Then when I talk to Claire, or Tiger the dog, I realise I’m living this nightmare."

Phelan has recently stopped treatment for cancer. She messaged Bird on Twitter following his interview, commending his honesty in the face of such a harrowing disease.

"You were so vulnerable sharing so openly the terror of living with a disease that you know is going to take everything from you – your voice, your swallow, your mobility ... yet your love of life, family and friends shone through. I have no doubt that you brought comfort to so many.

"I really hope that you get comfort from all the love and support that is being sent your way from all over Ireland."

Recently, the duo had shared an exchange on Twitter about meeting up, and Phelan told him that she would be thrilled to chat: "We have a lot in common...unfortunately!"

The pair met for tea and scones in Limerick on Monday. Phelan then announced that she will be joining an expedition to climb Croagh Patrick.

"The conversation flowed. We laughed. We cried. We hugged (apologies in advance to the Covid brigade!) We made plans to meet again. I have also been roped in to climb Croagh Patrick with Charlie and Claire and the whole of Ireland, it appears."

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