Brad Paisley and his wife, actress Kimberly Williams-Paisley, were recently catfished online by a woman claiming her daughter was dying of neuroblastoma, a type of fatal pediatric cancer.
Kimberly told ABC News that the email contained information from the mother, “Carrie,” saying “She said that her daughter had begged her to get in touch with me.”
According to ABC News, over the next 10 days Kimberly and the mother proceeded to exchange emails, phone calls and texts. The supposed mother sent photographs of the dying girl, named Claire, along with journal entries and recordings of songs that the girl had supposedly sung for Kimberly.
Country star Brad even hopped on the phone to sing “Amazing Grace” to “Claire.”
Brad said, “You’re singing to someone’s dying kid and in the middle of it, there’s no way that’s not real. How can that not be real?”
However, Kimberly says the story started to fall apart when “Claire” died and the mother refused to provide the Paiselys with an address to send flowers. The mother wrote Kimberly a resentful email saying, “You don’t need to pray for me. Doesn’t seem like god hears much of anything these days.”
The red flags were raised as Kimberly claims she had a “physical reaction” to the email.
Disturbingly, it turns out that the photos the mother sent had been stolen from the blog of a real girl in Southern California who had neuroblastoma.
“That’s the sickest part about this to me,” Brad told ABC, “That is the part that when I start to talk about that, that’s when I get really mad. That there were real kids, that there were real photos involved.”
According to ABC, the Paisley’s are not the only celebs to have been catfished. They join the scammed likes of Little Big Town, Natalie Grant, Kate Gosselin and more.
It certainly is disturbing to believe that this really happens, but if the documentary Catfish taught us anything, it’s that no one is who they say they are online.
To learn more about the dark, online catfishing these celebs experienced, watch “Nightline” Wednesday, Nov. 6.
RYOT NOTE: The internet can be a sketchy place, that’s why it’s important to always practice online safety. A Thin Line teaches young people to navigate the Internet safely, tackling subjects like social media, cyber-bullying and online dating. Click the gray box alongside this story to learn more about A Thin Line and your online rights, and Become the News!