Friday 24th August 2012
Abbie Butchers, 17, meets Katie Piper, left, thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation UK.
A teenager has met the woman who inspired her to stay strong while she faced months of medical treatment.
Abbie Butchers, was diagnosed with aplastic anaemia, a condition which causes bone marrow failure, at the age of 16.
She subsequently missed school as she had a bone marrow transplant and had to spend a month in isolation, but was kept company by reading Katie Piper's book.
Katie, an aspiring TV presenter, was the victim of a rape and acid attack that left her with severe facial disfigurement in 2008. She waived her anonymity to share her story and offer support for burns survivors.
Abbie, now 17, was able to meet Katie thanks to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, a charity which grants wishes to children and young people fighting life-threatening conditions.
Abbie, from Freshwater, on the Isle of Wight, met up with Katie at London eatery The Ivy along with her mum Julie and dad Jason. Katie presented her with a signed copy of her second book, Things Get Better, a card, which she had personally written, and two bags of goodies. They then spent the afternoon having lunch.
Abbie said: "I didn't believe I was really going to meet Katie until she walked in. I can't explain how I felt, it was really surreal, like a dream. It's made me put things into perspective though, no matter what your situation you can get through it."
Abbie was diagnosed when she was preparing to take her GCSEs. She endured regular blood transfusions and chemotherapy, which made her lose her hair, before having a bone marrow transplant in October.
Abbie said: "Make-A-Wish is amazing. Having a wish is such an amazing opportunity and is a really positive thing during a horrible time."
Katie said: "It was an absolute pleasure to meet Abbie and make her wish come true. She has been through an incredibly tough time but has remained very strong. I hope she enjoyed her day as much as I did."