After battling a rare cancer called paraganglioma for nearly five years, 15-year-old Karinya Chen just wanted to live a normal life like any other teenager. So when one of her favorite indie rock bands, Florence + The Machine, came to perform in Austin, she and her BFF excitedly got tickets for the show.
But when it became clear that her health was rapidly declining, her doctors, nurses and family members had to make the difficult decision to tell Karinya she was too sick to go. Nurse practitioner Christie Kremer wrote of the incident on Hospice Austin’s Christopher House’s Facebook page:
“We have a patient who held long cherished tickets to see Florence and The Machine last night with her BFF. All week through set back after set back she asked if she would be able to go. We tried to entertain the idea and it felt so scary and overwhelming for the medical staff and her mother that finally I said no, and my heart broke again.”
But through a miraculously swift chain of events, the staff of Christopher House and Hospice Austin were able to reach out to Florence who made a surprise visit to her biggest fan. In a room surrounded by Karinya’s high school friends, family and medical staff, Florence Welch and guitarist Rob Ackroyd arrived ready to sing at Karinya’s bedside.
They sang two duets together, held hands and hugged each other. As Karinya harmonized with the Grammy-winning singer and her friends sang backup, Florence seemed genuinely impressed. And there wasn’t a dry eye in the room.
What a wonderful and caring gift this performer gave to one of her biggest fans. Sadly, Karinya passed away four months after Florence’s heartwarming bedside performance. But the joy she seemed to experience that day will live on in the hearts of her loved ones forever.
Cancer Patient Karinya Chen Was Too Sick To Attend The Florence + The Machine Concert
So When Hospice Reached Out To Florence, She Came Through With Flying Colors
Karinya Had Battled Cancer For Five Years
She Was Overjoyed By The Surprise Bedside Performance
She Even Harmonized With Florence, Who Was Quite Impressed