By Ed Diokno
Sad news: Karinya “Yaya” Chen, who famously received a bedside concert from Florence + The Machine, lost her battle with cancer last month.
The story and video I posted last May featuring the 15-year old bone cancer patient and her duet with Florence Welch is one of this blog’s most-read entries.
Yaya was being cared for at Hospice Austin’s Christopher House when the staff learned that Yaya, a big fan of Florence + The Machine, couldn’t attend a nearby concert because of her illness. That’s when the staff arranged for singer Florence Welch to put on a private show for Yaya.
The singer dropped everything to visit Yaya at Christopher House. The video of the private performance went viral on YouTube, including a clip of Yaya and Welch singing a duet of the band’s hit Shake It Out. The moving video has since been viewed over 1.2 million times.
In an interview with KXAN five days before her death, Yaya said, “If you take it one day at a time and just tell yourself don’t worry and don’t take things for granted and tell yourself that you are loved and you are blessed, then it makes it a lot easier to fight.”