‘My kids have effectively lost their dad’: Kate Garraway fights back tears as she reveals ‘desperate’ husband Derek Draper has almost died SIX TIMES while making an emotional return to GMB
- Kate made her long-awaited return to Good Morning Britain on Wednesday to update fans on her husband Derek’s recovery
- The presenter also confirmed she would be returning to host the show full-time on Monday, while Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid take a break for the summer
- Kate fought back tears during the emotional interview as she revealed her ‘desperate’ husband Derek almost died ‘six times’ while hospitalised
- She added it’s a ‘miracle’ he’s survived during his 100-day battle with COVID-19, and admitted she was ‘absolutely gripped by fear’ at times when the former political lobbyist was in a coma’
- Derek was originally admitted to hospital with COVID-19 symptoms on March 30 and has since remained in intensive care
- Last month Kate revealed that Derek had been declared COVID-free, but remained in a ‘critical condition’
- Kate and Derek married in 2005, and share daughter Darcey, 14, and son Billy, 10
Kate Garraway fought back tears as she told how her children have ‘effectively lost their dad’ while making an emotional return to Good Morning Britain.
The TV personality, 53, revealed her husband Derek Draper, 52, remains in a ‘desperate situation’ and has almost died six times when his organs failed during his 100-day battle with coronavirus.
The mother-of-two admitted she was ‘absolutely gripped by fear’ at times when the former political lobbyist was in a coma, but said he has amazed doctors with his resilience and they have ‘fantastic hope’.
Kate explained how Derek has now started to open his eyes as she left the family’s ‘little bubble of sadness’ to return to the Good Morning Britain studio for the first time since her husband contracted the deadly disease.
Devastating: Kate Garraway fought back tears as she told how her children have ‘effectively lost their dad’ while making an emotional return to Good Morning Britain
She told Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid: ‘It’s a strange word, coma, he was induced which was what they were doing then because it was a way of resting the lungs, of course they’re no longer keeping him in the coma but he’s not fully awake.
‘There’s two types of coma, there’s the one we think of as vegetative coma, and the one Derek is in which is a minimum station of consciousness, so wonderfully his eyes are open but we have no real knowledge of what he can see or hear.
‘It is a very desperate situation, it’s very very difficult, of course there’s fantastic hope he’s still alive, the doctors do keep saying it’s a miracle he’s still alive. I was speaking to a doctor yesterday who said he’s sick as anyone I’ve ever seen in 35 years of medicine, and some of those people who were as sick of him aren’t here. Six times they said he’s not going to make it, and obviously you couldn’t visit.
‘So he’s been very very sick, but it’s a new disease, there’s no data, so what they can say is it’s great he’s here. There’s flickers of hope, his lungs are starting to recover, his kidneys are doing better, his liver, but they don’t know how much better he can get.’
Sad: The TV personality revealed her husband Derek Draper remains in a ‘desperate situation’ and has almost died six times during his 100-day battle with coronavirus
Optimistic: The mother-of-two admitted she was ‘absolutely gripped by fear’ at times when the former political lobbyist was in a coma, but said he has amazed doctors with his resilience and they have ‘fantastic hope’ (pictured in December 2019)
Asked whether there had been any explanation for why Derek had been so badly affected by the virus, Kate admitted doctors are still unsure.
She said: ‘There isn’t, he was a little bit overweight, I’m a bit of a feeder! Zero underlying conditions, he’s young comparatively, he’s 52, so there is no explanation.
‘I think what’s happened is at every stage they’ve been learning. One of the wonderful things is that they’ve changed medical practices, they’ve changed pathways because of Derek. I keep telling him on the Facetime he would be very pleased about that.’
Health battles: Kate explained how Derek has now started to open his eyes as she left the family’s ‘little bubble of sadness’ to return to the Good Morning Britain studio for the first time since her husband contracted the deadly disease
Positive: ‘It is a very desperate situation, it’s very very difficult, of course there’s fantastic hope he’s still alive, the doctors do keep saying it’s a miracle he’s still alive,’ Kate told Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid
REVEALED: HOW THE CRUEL LEGACY OF COVID MAY LAST A LIFETIME
Covid-19 could leave survivors with debilitating illnesses that last for years, doctors have warned since the outbreak spiralled out of control.
One leading medic called it ‘this generation’s polio’ – a disease that killed thousands and left a generation with life-long mobility issues.
Patients who spend weeks fighting for life in intensive care can suffer from long-term complications caused by permanent damage to their lungs and liver.
Physiotherapists also warn patients can suffer a loss of mobility, if they are stuck on hospital wards for weeks, or endure flashbacks and emotional distress.
But even patients who endure symptoms so mild they don’t get admitted to hospital are plagued by fatigue, headaches and breathlessness that can linger for weeks.
Several recent studies have highlighted proof Covid-19 causes fibrosis – scarring of the lung tissue that makes it harder for the organs to work.
A research paper published in a Chinese journal in March said ‘pulmonary fibrosis may be one of the major [long-term] complications in Covid-19 patients’.
Evidence is also emerging that the virus may affect the brain, causing seizures and stroke, as well as harming the liver, kidneys, heart and blood vessels.
A paper in the journal JAMA Cardiology in March reported one in five of 416 Covid-19 patients hospitalised in Wuhan, China, had suffered heart damage.
The heart problems are thought to occur as a result of the virus triggering a ‘cytokine storm’, where the immune system overreacts to the infection.
Number 10’s panel of leading scientists – SAGE – called for studies to investigate the lasting effects of the illness.
Now that Derek has been declared COVID-free, Kate admitted she fears for the long-term damage the virus may have done, and whether that will affect Derek in his recovery.
‘When he went into hospital, I got some texts saying ”oh I’m definitely not gonna die, tell the children I’m doing great,” but there was a feeling of terror because he had COVID and suddenly it escalated.
‘And then suddenly it became everything, and each stage has been sort of a new terror and just when I thought we were moving forward suddenly it can now affect your body everywhere.
‘There’s a huge post-viral syndrome, damage done in ways we didn’t know. I was sitting with Dr Hilary and he said it’s the lungs, it’s respiratory you’re fearing from COVID.’
What happened? Asked whether there had been any explanation for why Derek had been so badly affected by the virus, Kate admitted doctors are still unsure
Kate also reiterated that doctors had urged her to ‘get on with life’ while Derek continues to recover, insisting she had to be present for their two children Darcey, 14, and Billy, 11.
‘I have had moments, you know when you get abs gripped with fear and everything was going so well, but it’s happened to the world it’s happened to everybody, in this time you’ve seen people, I know people, you know people who have been watching this show who have been diagnosed with terrible illnesses,’ Kate added.
‘The doctors are saying to me now, ”You’ve got to get on, you’ve got to get on with life”. For Darcey and Billy effectively right now, they’ve lost their dad, they haven’t, he’s there.. he’s not a presence as he should be in their lives.’
Long road: Now that Derek has been declared COVID-free, Kate admitted she fears for the long-term damage the virus may have done, and whether that will affect Derek in his recovery (pictured together in December 2019)
Trying to move forward: Kate also said that her children Darcey, 14, and Billy, 10, would be returning to school in September, as the family try to continue with life during Derek’s recovery
Kate’s husband has been in hospital since March, and while Kate sparked hope over the weekend by revealing he has awoken from a coma, the star has been told his recovery could take years.
‘I have had moments, you know when you get abs gripped with fear and everything was going so well, but it’s happened to the world it’s happened to everybody, in this time you’ve seen people, I know people, you know people who have been watching this show who have been diagnosed with terrible illnesses. ‘
Speaking about being back in the GMB studio, Kate said: ‘It feels lovely to be back, it feels very strange. The positive is I know, and I can hear Derek, I mucked up this week with the children.
‘Billy is in year 6, they’d organised a hoody and I missed it and everyone got one and he didn’t get it, and he was really upset and I was really upset, fortunately one of the mums had ordered two, so he has now got one.
‘So I just thought, ”Come on Garraway” – Derek would be incensed with me – ‘this is your priority, you’ve got to get on, you’ve got to get back into things, you’ve got to cope…
‘The problem with this pandemic is it’s lives, it’s livelihoods, it’s fear and anxiety. I’ve got to get on and do the things I’m good at.’
Progress? Kate’s husband has been in hospital since March, and while Kate sparked hope over the weekend by revealing he has awoken from a coma, the star has been told his recovery could take years
Exciting: She also confirmed that she would be returning to Good Morning Britain full time on Monday alongside Ben Shephard, as Piers and Susanna take a break for the summer holidays
Back together: After filming Piers shared a snap of his reunion with Kate backstage, adding it was ‘lovely’ to see her ‘fabulous smile’ again
Thrilled: Following Kate’s announcement, Ben also took to Twitter to share his reaction, clearly thrilled they would be back behind the GMB desk once again
Kate then confirmed that she could be returning to GMB on Monday, to present the programme full-time during the summer holidays, as doctors have urged her to ‘get on with life’ during Derek’s recovery.
A timeline of Derek’s coronavirus battle
Kate revealed she and Prince Charles had got ‘relatively close’ at the Prince’s Trust Awards on March 11 – Charles was diagnosed with coronavirus in mid-March.
She said: ‘Around the 29/30 March, I came home came in and said [to Derek] ‘god you look ill.’
‘He said he had a headache, numbness in his right hand, and was struggling to breathe,
‘I rang Dr Hilary (Jones) and tried to get through, he talked to Derek. He said put me back on, I think you need to call an ambulance’
Derek, 52, was taken into hospital on March 30 and remained in an unresponsive condition.
Kate and her children isolated at home after she displayed ‘mild symptoms’.
Kate said: ‘Derek remains in intensive care and is still very ill. I’m afraid it remains an excruciatingly worrying time.
‘I’m afraid he is still in a deeply critical condition, but he is still here, which means there is hope.’
Kate said: ‘The journey for me and my family seems to be far from over as every day my heart sinks as I learn new and devastating ways this virus has more battles for Derek to fight.
‘But he is still HERE & so there is still hope.’
That month, Kate and her family took part in the final clap for carers
She said: ‘I’ll never give up on that because Derek’s the love of my life but at the same time I have absolute uncertainty’
On June 5, Kate revealed Derek is now free from coronavirus but continues to fight against the damage inflicted on his body
On July 5, Kate revealed Derek has woken from his coma but he remains in a serious yet critical condition.
On July 8, she announced she would be returning to GMB, after being urged by doctors to ‘get on with life’ during Derek’s recovery.
She added: ‘I’m coming back – I’m not sure I’ve quite for the fight to be Piers Morgan, I’m going to be with Ben Shephard!’
‘I’ve been trying to keep everything going and I’m not especially different, everyone is having to get on with sadness grief and loss, so if I come back we’re all in the same boat.
‘Derek would not just be saying come back, he’d be saying, why haven’t you done it before? As he got into the ambulance he said, ”Go inside and make them feel safe, because they’re going to be panicking about this.”
‘That would be his priority. My job is to make him feel safe and make them feel that they have a future and a world and whatever happens with Derek – we hope and believe he can come back to us – but whatever happens they have to feel they have a world. To see me getting on, they’re going to go back to school in September.’
Following the news of her return, Ben took to Twitter to reveal he’d been watching Kate’s interview, writing: ‘Don’t know about you but there’s something very right about seeing @kategarraway on my TV!
‘After all the darkness there is some light, cant wait to be with her in the studio on @gmb on Monday.’
He later added: ‘Really great to see @kategarraway chatting with @susannareid100 @piersmorgan and @DrHilaryJones You can tell it was special Piers even let Kate interrupt @GMB.’
Piers also took to Instagram to share a backstage snap with Kate, writing: ‘So lovely to have Kate back in the studio today & to see that fabulous smile again.
Clearly keeping optimistic about Derek’s recovery, Kate added; ‘I keep saying on FaceTime [to Derek], ”We are going to go to the Maldives!” They [the doctors] say, ”Maybe don’t book a ticket. Positive thinking, but don’t hand over the cash just yet…’ probably can’t fly anyway. [But they say] ‘Try and look where you’ve come from and try and look to the future.’
Kate said: ‘He’s absolutely fighting… he has an absolute will and if it’s about will to get back to see Darcey and Billy and me… I’ve been visualising sitting here with him. There’d be footage of him coming out of hospital.’
Kate also admitted that having the support of her fans – and some of the UK’s biggest stars – has been a great comfort during Derek’s illness.
She explained: ‘Robert Rinder, he just texted me and said, ”I live really near to you, what can I do?” Darcey was making a photo wall and we didn’t have any Blu Tack.. and he was like, ”Ok…”. We now have a system, I’ll say to him [that we need] butter and milk and he’ll send back a rainbow and it’s on its way.
‘David Beckham sent some video clips for the children, people have been incredibly lovely. Elton John contacted me. He got in touch, he said, ‘Hi Kate, It’s Elton’. I was like, ‘Elton…’ I think we do have a mutual friend. He was like, ‘What can I do to help?’ He said, ‘I’m on board’.
‘He’s incredible. I put the phone down, and I’m like, ‘That was Elton John…’ I said, ‘I think he’s going to help!’
‘Amanda Holden, she texted me on Sunday, I felt so low, I read a text and I couldn’t even text back, I’m sorry Amanda, she text just saying, ‘I’m thinking of you, you’re doing amazing’, just reading that is incredible.’
As she spoke about the moments leading up to his hospitalisation in March, GMB host Piers Morgan, 55, read out a loving text from Derek, 52, in which he expressed his wish for his beloved wife to win I’m A Celebrity.
Piers said: ‘I text Derek saying ‘Kate deserves to win. She should win but either way it’s been fantastic because you’re coming across as the woman we know. This genuine, warm, funny person.
‘He said ‘ thanks Piers, she’s an amazing woman. I so so want her to be the number one for once. She deserves that so much.’
A visibly emotional Kate looked incredibly moved as she heard Derek’s touching sentiments.
Sweet: Kate also admitted that stars including David Beckham, Amanda Holden and Elton John had reached out to offer their support, along with thousands of fans on social media
Kate previously spoke for the first time about when Derek was admitted, saying: ‘In that first week it looked like he was rallying. But then he was very bad, he couldn’t really speak to me, he could shout things to me on speakerphone.
‘He was begging me, he said ‘I can’t take this, I feel like I’m suffocating’, he said ‘please let them put me in a coma’ and they didn’t want to do that. On Sunday they said ‘we’re going to put him in a coma as overnight we think we have to do that.”
‘He said: ‘I love you, I’m sorry I have to leave you, you’ve saved my life’. I think he thought I had asked the doctors to put in him in a coma. He said ‘being married to you, the children, you saved my life’.’
On Sunday Kate revealed that Derek had awoken from his coma, but has been told his recovery could take years.
She told Hello! ‘The doctors have been urging me not to put my life on pause. They’ve told me that I need to go back to work and create a routine in our lives again.
‘The children and Derek are all I’ve thought about and they’re the most important people in my life, but I must create structure and normality for the children, to clean the bath, put the plates in the dishwasher and tidy the house.
‘I also need to get back to work so that I can provide for the children and we can do things together, to make them feel that the light hasn’t gone out of their lives, that there’s hope for the future.’
Happy: Kate and Derek have been married since 2005, with the former lobbyist cheering his wife on for the duration of her stint on I’m A Celebrity last year (pictured after she left the jungle in December 2019)
Kate also made a rare appearance on social media on Monday night to share her gratitude for the support she has received, since revealing Derek has awoken from his coma.
She thanked the publication for ‘helping me to bring you some of my hopes and plans for the future’ and added: ‘The future we are really hoping for – Derek recovering & coming home – is not nearly in sight & very uncertain.
‘But it feels positive to share how we are trying to keep ourselves going as I know so many are dealing with terrible challenges in all sorts of ways as we all try to emerge from these ghastly times, just as we continue to hope Derek can emerge from his minimum state of consciousness.
‘I hope reading this helps in some way. Thank you everyone for your lovely good wishes and for sending me your stories of how you’ve been coping too. I hope that some of the [article] brings some comfort – we’re all in this together.
‘Keep the hope alive and keep moving forwards! [sic]’
On Monday Piers and Susanna announced that Kate would be appearing on the show, before they headed off for a summer break.
Piers said: ‘A few papers are doing a lot of coverage today on our colleague and friend Kate Garraway and the situation involving her husband Derek.
‘It’s probably not quite as positive a story as the papers perhaps believe and we’ve just got a little clarification from Kate’s representative.’
The statement read: ‘These headlines give a level of optimism that may not yet be justified, we hope, as does Kate there will be more evidence of a recovery but it will be a very slow and uncertain path.’
Derek has previously credited Kate for saving him from depression which started during his career as a political advisor and led to a nervous breakdown and a stint in The Priory in the late 1990s.
Kate and Derek have been married since 2005, with the former lobbyist cheering his wife on for the duration of her stint on I’m A Celebrity last year.
Derek Draper: How meeting Kate rescued the hard-living former lobbyist from his battles with depression
Derek has previously credited Kate for saving him from depression which started during his career as a political adviser and led to a nervous breakdown and a stint in The Priory in the late 1990s.
After moving to Los Angeles for three years and retraining as a therapist, his friend GMTV’s political correspondent, Gloria De Piero, offered to set him up with her friend and colleague Kate.
Derek said: ‘I haven’t been depressed for years, since just before I met Kate, who has changed me for the better anyway.
‘I eventually realised I had been masking the depression for years with overwork, drinking or womanising… the drink, drugs and promiscuity, were all toys and inside, unbeknownst to me, the little child part of me was in the driving seat.’
Soulmates: Derek has previously credited Kate for saving him from depression which started during his career as a political adviser and led to a nervous breakdown and a stint in The Priory in the late 1990s (pictured 2006)
Kate and Derek have been married for 14 years, with the former lobbyist cheering his wife on for the duration of her stint on I’m A Celebrity last year, he flew out to Australia with their two children to meet her.
The couple, who wed in September 2005, have previously discussed their union, with Derek admitting that he feared she was ‘a high-maintenance TV bimbo’.
Following her stint on I’m A Celebrity, the couple were planning to renew their vows in the coming months after Kate revealed Derek had proposed for a second time.
Speaking to Mail on Sunday’s You magazine, Kate explained that the proposal idea had come about after she had removed her engagement ring while competing in the jungle.
However, the big moment – which happened off-camera – didn’t quite go to plan as Derek became too overwhelmed with emotion.
She said: ‘You’re told you can’t take any jewellery into the jungle. I didn’t want to take my wedding ring off, as I never have since we got married. But I did take my engagement ring off.
‘When Derek came to meet me after I left the jungle, he was planning to propose to me again [with the ring, in front of the TV cameras], but he got overwhelmed and burst into tears.’
Discussing the heartwarming moment further, she continued: ‘The kids leapt out and surprised me and Darcey said, ‘Oh Dad – you didn’t do it!’ So he got down on one knee and proposed… and I said yes, obviously.’
Derek is best-known for his career as a former lobbyist, who suffered a fall from grace when he was embroiled in the 1998 Lobbygate scandal.
Lancashire-born Derek was a former advisor to Tony Blair’s government and known for his party lifestyle before he met Kate.
During his time as a political adviser he was embroiled in two political scandals – 1998’s Lobbygate and in 2009 a scandal surrounding LabourList, the website he edited.
In 1998 he was caught in a sting by an undercover Observer reporter, bragging about his access to government ministers.
The Lobbygate scandal led to his Daily Express column being axed, the loss of his lobbying job and his firing from his role as editor of New Labour Magazine Progress.
He previously told The Scotsman: ‘Everyone assumes I got depressed because of the scandal.
‘Actually, I had been depressed for two years, from around 1996. I thought I had a physical virus. I’d always been quite arrogant and cocky, but I think I put all my unhappiness into my obsession with the Labour Party.
‘The really spectacular breakdown came two years into my depression with the lobbying thing. That was the killer.’
Depression he had been battling for two years turned into a nervous breakdown, with Derek spending a month in the Priory and undergoing therapy.
He went on to write two books – Blair’s 100 Days and Life Support – before moving to LA for three years and retraining as a psychotherapist.
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