Caitlyn’s X Factor star rising
GYMPIE X Factor contestant Caitlyn Shadbolt's 97-year-old great-grandmother would not miss the show for the world.
Isabelle Shadbolt, a Gympie Nursing Centre resident, joined the nation glued to television screens on Monday night to see Caitlyn sail through the second X Factor live elimination.
Caitlyn escaped unscathed, but it was not without a few tense moments. The Gympie singer was the last of Ronan Keating's acts on stage and as numbers dropped, the wait was excruciating.
Keating looked almost more relieved than Caitlyn when the singer's name was called as safe, hugging her before the pair left the stage.
Dannii Minogue's two group acts, Younger Than Yesterday and XOX, fell into the bottom two.
XOX was spared after judges voted unanimously to send the boy band home, saving Minogue from having to make the deciding vote.
Isabelle has become the focus of attention in Gympie Nursing Centre and received many well-wishes after Monday's verdict.
"She did very well," Isabelle said. "I am so very proud of her."
Isabelle said she "loved" Sunday's Blaze of Glory performance.
She recalled a young singing and dancing Caitlyn.
"Ever since she was tiny, she has always been singing and dancing," Isabelle said.
"The other residents have been coming to me saying how happy they are for her. It's wonderful."
Caitlyn's mother, Helen, was waiting at the airport yesterday on the way home when she spoke to The Gympie Times, not long after being identified buying coffee.
"A random person just pointed me out at the coffee shop saying I was Caitlyn's mum," Helen said.
"It made me smile after feeling a bit down leaving Caitlyn there."
Helen was thrilled with the judges' compliments after her daughter's Sunday performance and Keating "could not have given more beautiful words".
Even Redfoo softening for country was a highlight.
Helen was able to share breakfast and dinner with Caitlyn to make the most of the precious time together before returning home yesterday.