Helen McCrory and Damian Lewis’ marriage as he remembers his ‘beautiful’ wife

Helen McCrory will be remembered as a woman of "beauty and might," as expressed by her husband Damian Lewis on Friday evening.

The celebrated actress died aged 52 after battling cancer, dying "peacefully at home" with her loved ones by her side.

Damian shared a statement announcing her death on Twitter, sharing the heartbreaking news with her legions of fans across the globe.

He said: "She died as she lived. Fearlessly. God, we love her and we know how lucky we are to have had her in our lives."

Damian added: "She blazed so brightly. Go now, Little One, into the air, and thank you."

Throughout their marriage, the couple were dedicated to campaigning for charity, promoting the Prince’s Trust Awards in their final TV appearance together.

The couple reportedly first got to know one another when they were performing in Five Gold Rings at London's Almeida Theatre in the early noughties, striking up a connection.

Harry Potter star Helen previously admitted her husband’s sense of humour was what attracted her at first.

"He just made me laugh a lot. And still does," she told Radio Times.

"Of course, everyone in life wants someone to love and be loved by, but I think I was always just engrossed and involved in work. And no, the timing was pure fluke, pure chance, it always is, isn't it?"

The sweethearts quickly fell for one another and got engaged in 2006, compromising when it came to their engagement rings.

Helen told the Daily Mail: "When Damian and I got engaged, I wanted a ring made of tin.

"I love travelling and one thing I’ve learnt is that if you travel with a diamond on your hand, you might attract the wrong sort of attention. Damian put his foot down so it’s titanium. These are our wedding rings, which are platinum."

Months later, they celebrated the birth of their first child – daughter Manon, 14.

A source close to the actress reportedly told the Mirror at the time: "She is really, really thrilled about the baby.

"It's going to be a busy year for her – moving house, organising a wedding and preparing for a new addition."

A year later, they made things official and married in an intimate London ceremony.

Walking down the aisle in the Kensington and Chelsea Registry Office, Damian and Helen settled on a short and low-key ceremony.

Helen was expecting the couple’s second child at the time, as she told Daily Mail: "I wore a cornflower-blue Roberto Cavalli dress – white’s pushing it a bit when you’ve got a baby in one hand and another in your tum!"

After the wedding, they headed to a nearby restaurant and had lunch with 11 of their nearest and dearest friends and family members.

That same year, Helen welcomed their second child, son Gulliver, 13, with the family moving to Los Angeles while Damian filmed the NBC-TV crime drama Life.

Later, they returned to the UK, living together in their Victorian-era North London home, eventually investing in a second home near Sudbury in Suffolk.

Having acted together on the stage, the couple also starred alongside one another in the 2015 film Bill, which was set during Shakespeare's "lost years".

Helen played Queen Elizabeth I, while her husband portrayed seaman and explorer Sir Richard Hawkins.

More recently, when the coronavirus pandemic struck, the couple helped to raise £1million for Feed NHS, which gives food from restaurants to NHS workers.

Helen served as an honorary patron of the London children's charity Scene & Heard, while Damian previously became a trade justice ambassador for the charity Christian Aid.

Both Damian and Helen were ambassador’s for the Prince’s Trust, discussing their campaigning during their final TV appearance together.

They were invited to appear on Good Morning Britain on March 12 of this year, raising awareness of the youth charity, which helps young people to get jobs.

During the interview, presenter Kate Garraway asked: "Are you alright Helen? You sound a bit croaky, have you got a sore throat?"

"No, I’ve got children! Thank you for asking," Helen replied.

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Helen continued: "And no make-up artist and no hairdresser! So if there's a young person out there who would like a bit of help, phone up Prince's Trust and then come straight over here!"

Sadly, just over one month later, Damian announced his wife’s tragic death, bringing their 14-year marriage to a heartbreaking end.

Tributes have since flooded in from Helen's many fans and peers in the theatre world, remembering her remarkable life and legacy.

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