Vanessa Feltz becomes emotional on live TV as she praises Dame Esther Rantzen following cancer diagnosis
Vanessa Feltz has praised close friend Dame Esther Rantzen after she revealed that she has lung cancer, which has spread.
TV presenter Feltz, 60, was live on air for TalkTV when she suddenly received a text message from Rantzen, whom she has known for 30 years.
The emotional star then told viewers just how “lucky” she feels to have Dame Esther as her friend, while also describing her as “perfect”.
Taking off her reading glasses, Feltz told viewers: “I’ve just had a lovely message from Dame Esther Rantzen – that’s why I was just looking at my phone.
“I’m sending her so much love and so many, many good wishes. I wonder if she’s watching? I hope she is.”
Feltz continued: “She was phenomenal when Her Majesty passed away, do you remember? She was just such a great guest.
“She was incredibly knowledgeable and amazingly eloquent. She’s just the perfect person to speak to in that regard. She always is the perfect person to speak to.
“So lots and lots of love to Esther Rantzen.”
The London-born star then went on speak in more depth about her 82-year-old friend and fellow broadcaster, highlighting her positive attitude in the wake of her cancer diagnosis.
“She says she is incredibly optimistic and that does not surprise me,” she said. “She’s wonderful. Oh, I’m so lucky to be her friend.
“I’ve been her friend for about 30 years, I was working it out today. Thirty or 35, something like that, years. She’s amazing.
“She’s kind of like an adornment to anybody’s life. She’s just fabulous, and I wish her well.”
Dame Esther, whose career spans more than five decades, opened up about her lung cancer battle on Sunday.
In a statement released by the Press Association, the That’s Life and Hearts Of Gold legend revealed it has spread to other parts of her body.
Dame Esther – who launched the charity Childline in 1986 and was awarded a DBE in 2015 – said: “In the last few weeks I have discovered that I am suffering from lung cancer which has now spread.
“At the moment I am undergoing various tests, to assess the best treatment.”
“I have decided not to keep this secret any more because I find it difficult to skulk around various hospitals wearing an unconvincing disguise,” she added.
“I would rather you heard the facts from me.”
She concluded her statement by praising the doctors who had been looking after her, saying: “Thanks to the extraordinary skills of the medical profession there are wonderful new treatments, so I am remaining optimistic.”