A bereaved daughter has told of her desperation to track down tickets for a Paulo Nutini benefit gig to help her commemorate the life of the father she lost to terminal cancer.
Katie Smith, from Cardiff, lost 69-year-old dad Jim Smith last October after he had been struggling with heartburn, swallowing difficulties, and a raspy voice for months but brushed it off.
When his condition worsened he made a rare visit to the GP and, after a hospital referral and numerous tests, the family received the bombshell the cancer was so advanced there was no treatment.
The grandfather of two died five months later on March 13.
At his funeral his only request was to have Nutini’s song Candy playing.
Ms Smith, 37, said: “I nearly fell off my chair when he said that as although he had been to a few concerts with my mum Pam I never knew that a certain song had touched him that much.
“He did not have any other requests for anything. Not the funeral, his ashes, his belongings, his car – anything. Just that one song. Of course we fulfilled that wish.”
Nutini will play his only UK concert this year in Newport on July 20 in memory of young mum Bevlee Jones after being touched by her family’s story.
The gig at Newport Centre will raise funds for Bevlee’s 13-year-old son Ieuan who had asked the Scottish singer to perform at Bevlee’s funeral.
Bevlee, 34, passed away unexpectedly during the night in March leaving family and friends devastated.
Ms Smith said when she found out about the gig she was “overcome with emotion and excitement”.
On the day of the concert Ms Smith’s aunt Mary Lamont is visiting from Dundee and the family say they have searched daily since the tickets went on sale but to no avail.
Ms Smith, who works in sales, said: “I am not after a freebie. I am not after a sympathy card. I just want to celebrate my wonderful daddy at this event with my mum and auntie.
“I will pay or make a donation if I can be lucky enough to locate some tickets.”
Ms Smith described her Scotsman father as a “social butterfly” who “lived life to the full”.
She added: “He did not waste a second. He was always out at bowls, golf, or just propping a bar up being the life and soul. He had a huge circle of friends.
“This was very apparent at the funeral as the large chapel was just not big enough. Not bad for a 69-year-old Scotsman!”
Ms Smith said the five months from October to March were “extremely tough” with the final week being the worst seven days of her life.
One of four children, Ms Smith said her siblings live away – including one in Australia.
She added: “Me and my mum did all we could to try and make things as comfortable as possible and the others came as much as they could. Christmas was just heartbreaking.”
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Living with cancer
Hear Paolo Nutini perform Iron Sky