A BRAVE girl from Bridgwater has won her battle with cancer and sung live on television during a rollercoaster year.
Libby Heal, 13, was diagnosed with germ cell cancer in March after becoming ill very suddenly and had a six kilo tumour removed from her ovary soon afterwards.
After a gruelling five-month course of chemotherapy, she was given the all clear in July and has gone from strength to strength since.
For the last four months she has been involved in the Big C choir, run by cancer charity Tenovus for people who are suffering or recovering from the disease.
The experience has meant she appeared on television twice last week, first in a documentary called Sing for Your Life which tracked the choir’s progress.
She then sang soprano in the choir’s version of Run by Snow Patrol live with Leona Lewis on Channel 4’s fundraising telethon Stand Up To Cancer hosted by Davina McCall, Alan Carr and Dr Christian Jessen on Friday night.
Libby said: “It’s been quite hard being ill because I have had to miss school and other normal things, but being involved with the choir has been the best silver lining.
"It’s been amazing. I got a hug from Davina, Alan and Dr Christian, which was really good.
“They are all really down to earth.
“I’m not fazed by singing live on TV because I perform at the carnival concerts anyway, so it’s just like a bigger version of that.
“I don’t really notice the cameras anymore.
“When I look back at 2012 when I’m older, I will think of it as the year I was with the choir, not the year I was diagnosed with cancer.”
Her mum Jacqui said: “The doctors didn’t realise how big the tumour was until they operated, but it was the size of a football. She was really poorly at one stage and it even collapsed one of her lungs.
“She has been an absolute star and really trucked through it all.
“The choir has been great for her. I wanted her to do something to rebuild her confidence – she hadn’t been able to see her friends as much as normal and she had lost that ‘Libby edge’, but this has really helped her. I am very proud of her.”