Huge loss | 

Vicky Phelan pays emotional tribute to ‘amazing’ Lynsey Bennett as funeral details announced

“I am thinking today of Lynsey's two beautiful girls, Zoe and Hailee, who are so very young to have their mother taken away from them.”

Lynsey Bennett. Picture: Shelley Corcoran

Lynsey on holiday friend Una Healy

Lynsey Bennett

Lynsey Bennett with her daughters

Lynsey Bennett outside court after her settlement in 2021

Vicky Phelan

Eugene MastersonSunday World

Funeral details have been announced for Lynsey Bennett with the brave mum to be laid to rest on Monday in her native Longford following a lengthy battle with cancer.

Fellow CervicalCheck campaigner Vicky Phelan tonight paid tribute to mum-of-two Lynsey, who died last night surrounded by family and friends.

“I am very late posting a tribute to @lynseybennettofficial here today because I am not well myself and spent most of the day out at the hospital having a procedure done,” wrote Limerick mum-of two Vicky (46) on Instagram.

“That, unfortunately, is the reality of living with late stage cervical cancer as Lynsey would have known only too well these last few months of her very short life, at only 34 years of age.”

She adds: “I am thinking today of Lynsey's two beautiful girls, Zoe and Hailee, who are so very young to have their mother taken away from them. I would also like to sympathise with Lynsey's family and friends. I am so very sorry for your loss. Lynsey had an amazing will to live which no doubt kept her alive for as long as she did beyond the 6 month prognosis that she was given.

Her daughters were able to get some extra precious time to spend with their Mam and make some more memories that they will treasure. May you Rest in Peace Lynsey,” she added.

Lynsey Bennett with her daughters

A posting on from her family said Lynsey died “peacefully at home surrounded by her family and friends.”

The post added: “Predeceased by her beloved mother Lesley. Lynsey will be sadly missed and remembered with love by her family, darling daughters Zoë and Hailee, father Coote, sisters Averyl and Kelley, brother-in-law Craig, nieces Bella and Fiadh, uncle Cecil and his wife Irene, aunts, uncles, cousins Rachael, Jessica and Joe, relatives and a wide circle of friends.

Lynsey’s funeral will take place in St.John’s Church, Battery Road, Longford at 12.00 noon on Monday with burial afterwards in the adjoining churchyard.

The funeral notice adds: “Family flowers only, donations, if desired, to Longford Hospice and LARCC Centre, c/o Glennon Funeral Directors or any family member.”

The single mum, who was diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2017, leaves behind two beloved daughters Zoe (14) and Hailee (9).

Last year Lynsey flew to Mexico to try pioneering treatment in a specialised hospital in Cancun.

Lynsey Bennett

Early last year she settled her High Court action over the alleged misinterpretation of her cervical smear slides.

She had also planned her own funeral and set up a trust fund for her two daughters.

Tributes have been pouring in across social media following the sad news.

Lynsey’s solicitor Gillian O’Mahony confirmed the news earlier today in a statement.

“It is with great sadness that the family of Lynsey Bennett wish to announce that Lynsey passed away peacefully last night.

“Lynsey was a very special person. Lynsey’s beautiful girls, father, sisters, family and friends are heartbroken art the passing of Lynsey at the young age of 34 and would appeal for privacy at the moment.”

Among those to pay tribute was former Miss World Rosanna Davison.

Vicky Phelan

Rosanna Davison shared a snap with the Lynsey on Instagram and paid an emotional tribute.

She wrote: "Absolutely devastated. Sending love and strength to Lynsey's family, friends and especially her two daughters.

"Heartbroken for her beautiful girls. Met Lynsey for the first time this year and we stayed in touch.

"I was in awe of her strength and kindness and positivity. RIP gorgeous girl. Life is so precious and fragile."

Lynsey’s local Church of Ireland Rector Simon Scott, who was the young Longford woman’s pastor, paid tribute to her.

He told the Sunday World: “She was a special person. I say special in the eyes of the Lord.”

“There is so much there about her already and I can really add no more in saying what a special person she was.”

Lynsey became pals with Una Healy in recent years and was pictured on holidays earlier this year with the Saturdays singer.

The singer told of her devastation on Instagram.

"I am heartbroken beyond words,” she wrote.

"I am so grateful for all the special memories we made together. Always in my heart, forever in my soul. Life is so precious and you lived and loved it to the fullest.”

"Rest in peace my beautiful friend. My thoughts are with your family and friends especially your babies Zoe and Hailee.”

Labour TD for Tipperary, Alan Kelly extended his sympathy to the family and friends of Lynsey.

Lynsey Bennett outside court after her settlement in 2021

Deputy Kelly said: "I am so sad today to hear of Lynsey’s passing at such a young age, and my thoughts are with her daughters Zoe and Hailee, her extended family and friends.

“Lynsey showed incredible resilience and strength despite having to resort to going public through the courts to get justice when she should have been spending her precious time with her children.

“As I said when Lynsey won her settlement in 2021, no other woman should have to go through the courts to get settlements for Cervical Check failures yet it still goes on.

“Women like Lynsey who were let down by the system should not be remembered as victims of health screening errors. Their legacy is fighting for all women who have been left down by our health services. Lynsey certainly was a fighter.

A friend of Lynsey’s also paid tribute on social media.

“RIP my girl, may you get the best in heaven,” she wrote. “Such a strong girl, fighting right ‘til the end. Will be lost without your positive chats and advice. Will miss seeing this smile and having an auld gossip.

Rector Scott has helped Lynsey plan her funeral, in which she wants Dermot Kennedy’s version of the Van Morrison song Days Like This played.

“He sat there writing pages and pages of everything that I wanted said and done and he had no problem,” she previously told the Sunday World.

“He supported my friends and sent them messages and phoned them and checked in with them, and honestly he is just a remarkable man.”

Lynsey on holiday friend Una Healy

The dignified young woman managed to join her religious services, either online or at her local church every weekend despite all that was going on in her life.

She said she believed in the power of prayer.

“The amount of people who have said that they are praying for me and I’m so grateful and I so appreciate that … and the amount of people who will say ‘I’m not religious but I’m praying for you’, and I just think its gives people some hope and it’s so comforting people knowing that.”

Asked how she can believe in a God that oversees tragedies that befall the likes of her, she paused and then said: “I don’t really go into thoughts like that. I have never ever once turned around and said ‘why me?’. I’ve often said ‘sure why not me?’.

“I think that sometimes things happen and that you are given it because you need to help other people. I think people learn from people’s pain and people’s misfortune, so that’s how I view it. I don’t go into the ‘why me’ and the negative thoughts, I try to stay away from that as much as I can.”

Lynsey met other women affected by the cervical smear test scandal, including Vicky Phelan.

“I have actually met Vicky in person and we do send messages every so often and I have met loads of the other women,” she previously confirmed.

“I have had huge support and phone calls and messages."

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