Talented singer-songwriter Jordan O’Keefe has spoken of the devastation which led to him to compose a heartfelt musical tribute for Oscar Knox.
The song, entitled ‘Wee Oscar’, was posted online by the 20-year-old Britain’s Got Talent (BGT) star last night.
Drumahoe man Jordan said he was “absolutely gutted” after his mother broke the news that five-year-old Oscar had lost his battle with neuroblastoma last week.
Jordan was a supporter of Oscar’s since the start of the awareness campaign, with Jordan’s management at Enterprise Factor CIC also running Oscar’s campaign.
He was introduced to Oscar and his family through the Fearless Boxing Event at Belfast City Hall last April, where Jordan performed for them.
He then went on to wear Oscar’s wristbands right the way throughout BGT, and credits Oscar’s fight as the thing that gave him the courage to get to the final of the show.
After BGT, Jordan presented Oscar Knox with the overall Spirit of NI Awards at the Culloden Hotel last year.
When Jordan’s cancer returned last November, Jordan wore a t-shirt on stage in front of 5,000 people with the message: ‘Keep going wee man.’
Jordan said: “I actually found out on the Thursday night going to Belfast. My phone was going mental. I phoned my mammy back. The thing is, even though we all knew about it, whenever it happened it was just heartbreaking.
“I sat on my own for two hours breaking my heart.
“Whenever he first got rid of the cancer I was buzzing. Then it did come back and he lost his fight.”
Jordan said that he struck up an instant rapport and developed a deep bond with Oscar the moment they met.
“I presented him with the Spirit of Northern Ireland Award and the first thing he said to me was come up on stage with me even though he wasn’t allowed to go on stage. He was a wee character, he was brilliant.
“The thing is he brought the whole country together, a wee lad of five, and as his dad said in his speech, he did in five years what people hope to accomplish in their whole lifetime. Fair play to him.”
Speaking about writing the song, Jordan said: “It was an idea I had in mind. I wasn’t planning to write a song to have a hit or get my name in lights. It is not the best song in the world. I am only telling the story I have experienced.
“I started writing it the day I found out. My head was that messed up at the time I didn’t know what to write or what I wanted to write.
“I went to Liverpool last weekend it just came to me then and I just played it on the guitar today.”