Shawn Mendes, 20, did his part to replace one girl’s horrifying Manchester Arena memories with better ones.
ITV did a story on Amelia Thompson, a survivor of the May 2017 Manchester Arena bombing that killed 23 and injured an additional 800-plus during an Ariana Grande concert. Two years ago, after the attack Thompson was “severely shaken up and unable to talk for days after what happened,” according to ITV.
Thompson aimed to shake off the trauma of the tragic bombing by purchasing tickets to see the Toronto-born singer-songwriter, Mendes, at Manchester Arena earlier this year. Unfortunately, her mother was unprepared to revisit the scene of the heinous act.
Fortunately, a first responder came to the rescue. Aaron Palmer met Thompson, who was 11 at the time of the bombing, at various charity events in memory of the victims. Palmer was a police officer outside the arena the night of the bombing.
Palmer offered to go to the Mendes concert with Thompson. Upon arriving at the venue, Thompson was told she was going to meet Mendes. Thompson walked through the same door she was carried out of two-years-prior, almost immediately embracing Mendes.
“It was really overwhelming and it felt so surreal but I really enjoyed it,” Thompson said of her brief time with Mendes. “[He] was so nice to me and I’m a bit overwhelmed… I have new positive memories in there and they will definitely cancel out the negative ones.”