Celine Dion rings in her 48th birthday

By Jack White

Celine Dion has faced her most challenging year to date, but hopefully the superstar is finding some reasons to smile today as she celebrates her 48th birthday. Celine's husband René Angélil passed away in January following a long battle with throat cancer, while her brother Daniel Dion died from the same disease just two days later.

But although such heartbreak would keep many people down, Celine stuck to her commitments and returned to the stage just a month later.

Celine Dion's husband Rene Angelil tragically passed away in January

After René's funeral, Celine thanked fans for their support. In a statement she said: "My family and I are deeply touched by the outpouring of love and support from so many people who have touched our lives during these past few days.

"We have felt your love for René, and your prayers and compassion have helped us during this most difficult time… more than you'll ever know. I thank you from the bottom of my heart."

During her Las Vegas residency performance at Caesars Palace on Feb. 23, Celine broke down while singing "All By Myself" – helping her fans to resonate even more with her devastating situation.

Celine performed a moving tribute to the victims of the Paris attacks at the AMAs

But, despite the dark lows, this year has also been one of many highs for the "Think Twice" singer. As well as making a successful return to Vegas, Celine also put her own losses to one side and performed an emotional tribute to the victims of the Paris attacks at the American Music Awards.

Over 12 concerts between February and March, Celine performed to almost 50,000 fans – earning more than $9 million.

Celine and René were married for 21 years, and share sons René-Charles, 15, and five-year-old twins Eddy and Nelson.

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