Monday 11 December 2017

Irish Big Brother star Savannah O'Reilly urged to follow dreams after heartbreak over father's sudden death

Savannah O'Reilly
Savannah O'Reilly Newsdesk Newsdesk

Irish Big Brother star Savannah O'Reilly was spurred on to follow her dreams after her father's sudden death, her mother has revealed.

O'Reilly (26), a singer from the Liberties, has fast emerged as the bookies - and viewers' - favourite on the current season of Big Brother and the first to earn permanent housemate status.

And while her bubbly personality is winning over fans, her mum Jackie told the Sunday World she developed a new zest for life after passing of her father Austin two years ago when he was just 45 years old.

"Two and a half years ago, her dad died suddenly, he had stomach cancer. That changed her whole perspective on life, as in grabbing life, taking a risk, taking a chance and if it doesn't work out, then facing the consequences," she told the paper.

Austin was diagnosed with stomach cancer in 2015 and died six weeks later. "It was the most difficult time in her life, she was his world and he was so supportive of everything she did. She got through it and now I believe there isn't anything she cannot overcome."

The budding reality star, whose real name is Shauna, moved to Los Angeles and is working with Jessica Simpson's estranged father Joe in the hopes of releasing some music later this year.

But her mother said she is proud of her daughter's down-to-earth attidue. "She might have an exciting life, but she is very grounded. She will still be herself. Even now she still pops in to get her nails done on Meath Street, she doesn't go to hifalutin salons."

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