Kate Garraway has discussed the moment husband Derek Draper returned home and was reunited with his children after more than a year in intensive care following a Covid battle.
Appearing on Friday’s episode of Good Morning Britain, the journalist revealed that daughter Darcey, 15, and son Billy, 11, were overwhelmed as they saw their father, while Derek immediately burst into tears at the reunion.
Kate added that Derek is ‘aware’ that he’s home and ‘is responding all the time’ but he is unable to talk as she tearfully recalled moments from the last few days, including setting the table for four people instead of three, after a year of it being just her and the children at home.
She recalled: ‘When we came in the door and pulled up, I could see Darcey and Billy looking out the window and they ran out and ran to the door and he immediately burst into tears and there was a lot of hugging.
‘He knew he was home. He is responding all the time, what he’s not able to do is talk. But he is responding and aware where he is. There have been so many lovely little moments – he can swallow a little bit now so I said “lets get you round the table for a little bit.”‘
Reunited: Kate Garraway has discussed the moment husband Derek Draper returned home and was reunited with his children after more than a year in intensive care following Covid battle
She said that it felt ‘like the start of a new chapter but a really really big important one’, remarking on the significance of setting the dinner table for four instead of three.
Kate began to well up as she spoke about making Derek one of her casseroles, explaining: ‘As I was laying out the plates I realised I was laying out four, it makes me cry now, and Darcey was saying, “Oh, we’re going to put four spoons down“.
‘And Billy was like, “Have we got enough mash?“ I said, “Yes, I don’t think dad’s going to be eating that much,“ but he suddenly remembered dad’s old portions.
‘We weren’t all sitting around the dinner table, we just constructed a version of it. It just feels like the start of a huge chapter, but a really big and important one.It’s such a silly little thing but it was just oh my goodness. It’s massive’.
Emotional: Appearing on Friday’s episode of Good Morning Britain, the journalist revealed that daughter Darcey, 15, and son Billy, 11, were overwhelmed as they saw their father, while Derek immediately burst into tears at the reunion
Discussing Derek’s ongoing health needs, she explained: ‘He can’t really move, he needs a lot of help. It’s 24/7 care. I haven’t really slept as you can probably tell.
‘It’s a new team now helping him and working with him. It’s going to take a lot of adjustment. On top of the care side there’s also the therapeutic side. This isn’t just for us, but helping it will prompt some recovery’.
The TV presenter, 53, has had their family home adapted so that Derek, also 53, could come back and receive round-the-clock care at their North London property.
Former lobbyist Derek has now been taken off all hospital machines, but his family have been warned he still has a long way to go to recover from the virus.
Recovering: Former lobbyist Derek has now been taken off all hospital machines, but his family have been warned he still has a long way to go to recover from the virus
Kate explained that while she’s pleased to see Derek’s progress, things seem to have slowed down. She revealed: ‘It’s going to take a lot of adjustment. But on top of the care side, there’s the very specialised therapeutic intervention, which will have to come in to make sure that this isn’t just about getting him with us for us, it’s hoping that actually this will prompt… some recovery.
‘He’s definitely sort of plateaued at this level. Obviously we’re very grateful for this level but want to see if we can move forward, if we can get him speaking more, able to move more and see what we can draw out. It’s going to be very slow and a bit of wait and see. The physiotherapy, the occupational therapy, neuropsychology as well and speech and language therapy all working on a programme.
‘What they’ve said is purpose is what they hope will come in, so when they see the children playing, will it perhaps prompt him more to say, “What you building with your Lego, Bill?“ or “What are you doing Darcey?“ rather than a forced situation in a vacuum in a room with people in PPE.’
Little things: She said that it felt ‘like the start of a new chapter but a really really big important one’, remarking on the significance of setting the dinner table for four instead of three
She continued: ‘You saw in the documentary, there have been improvements in autumn, he’s using more words, and there are more things that he can do now. He’s got some more movement in his hands, he can show emotion.
‘But it felt as though everything had stalled medically and if anything was going slightly back. Obviously within the very necessary Covid restrictions that are in place, I couldn’t visit, family couldn’t visit, even some of the therapeutic things we would want to do to help him move forward couldn’t happen, so taking all that into account, they said, “Right let’s give this a go, let’s get him home safely.“
‘So it does feel a little bit like the hospital has come home with me at the moment, as we’ve got all sorts of professional people making sure everything is safe and then see how being in the family environment could help.’
She added that their children have been ‘amazing’ throughout, stating ‘they’ve both just not stopped cuddling him’.
News they’ve been waiting for: Former lobbyist Derek has now been taken off all machines but the family have been warned he still has a long way to go in his recovery from the virus
Elsewhere on the show, Kate’s Good Morning Britain co-host Ben Shephard appeared to be trying to fight back tears as he spoke about the news Derek would be returning with co-host Ranvir Singh.
Ben revealed: ‘We are all smiling this morning, aren’t we? The news that he has been able to travel home and is living at home now with Kate, Darcey and Bill.
‘Honestly this means an awful lot to us because we’ve shared this with Kate personally, but when we come in and see the messages from you guys and how pleased you are.
‘It’s the first step in a very, very long journey for Derek and Kate and for the family trying to work out how it’s going to unfold. There is 24 hour care for him at home.’
Reaction: Taking to Twitter after watching the segment, Good Morning Britain viewers shared their well wishes
Ranvir added: ‘It’s a progress thing isn’t it. Now doctors are saying he is responding regularly which is an amazing thing, but there’s going to be a lot of help needed for Kate and the family.’
‘It’s a God send,’ Showbiz correspondent Richard Arnold added. ‘Having been with her through this journey, it’s been absolutely heartbreaking. It’s not so much joy unconfined, but it’s a relief, palpable relief for all of us.’
Later on, Ranvir remarked: ‘Anybody who is in a vulnerable state and you haven’t been able to see them to give them your personal love, your personal attention, for them to hear your voice, haven’t been able to touch them, will know.
‘For somebody in recovery, not just survival mode, in actual recovery, which is where Derek has been for these last few months rather than just trying to stay alive … actually not having that contact with Kate, I think everyone in the medical field and around him could see that that was having an effect on him.
‘Medicine is one thing, but the psychology, the mind … there is a magic in the family that you can’t replicate in a medical setting, no matter how much you can try.
‘It’s about that contact, hearing your children. That can have an enormous effect on somebody’s recovery.’
Change in pace: Kate explained that while she’s pleased to see Derek’s progress, things seem to have slowed down, saying his progress has ‘plateaued’ but doctors hope being home with family will help move things on
An insider told the Sun that the family they have wept tears of joy, adding: ‘Kate’s dreamt of this day for so long, and can’t thank wonderful NHS staff enough.’
A family friend declared Kate has been ‘dreaming of this day’, and said: ‘The children, who have been so resilient, have been so, so happy to have their dad home. There have been a lot of happy tears from everyone.
‘This past year has given Derek and Kate an absolutely unbreakable bond — she has been such a rock, and a total inspiration to everyone in Britain battling their own horror stories with the pernicious disease.’
It was reported by the publication that Derek was taken by ambulance back to his home on Wednesday after he began regularly responding while under the care of doctors in hospital.
It has been confirmed that Derek is Britain’s longest surviving Covid hospital patient after he was first admitted with breathing difficulties on March 30 last year.
Derek was put on a ventilator and spent months in a form of coma before uttering his first word – ‘pain’ – in October last year.
The father of two’s body has been ‘universally affected’ by the condition, which means that it has targeted his lungs, heart, kidneys, liver and pancreas.
Kate has reportedly spent ‘thousands’ on renovating their family home to support Derek’s return. It was revealed last week that Kate has taken control of her husband’s business affairs, a year after he contracted Covid.
Sweet: Kate added that their children have been ‘amazing’ throughout, stating ‘they’ve both just not stopped cuddling him’ (pictured in 2019)
12 months on after he was first admitted to hospital, Kate, was made the director of a firm founded by Derek.
Documents filed to Companies House show she’s been named on the books of his Astra Aspera Ltd firm. The company’s name is a take on the Latin phrase ‘ad astra per aspera’ which means ‘to the stars through hardship’.
She has been handed more than 50% of the firm to give her the controlling interest to make decisions on her own and notes on the company’s listing show that it is late in filing accounts for 2019 due to Derek’s illness.
Books for 2018 revealed it paid more than £128,000 in tax meaning the firm was taking in a healthy income. Derek – the firm’s other director – founded the outfit in 2011.
A source told MailOnline: ‘It’s been an incredibly tough year for Kate and the family and she’s been left with a lot of financial decisions and complications on top of it all.
‘Making Kate the director for Derek’s company for the time being, was the best decision for everyone to try to manage things while Derek is unable to. It’s been a lot for Kate to handle but she’s determined to tackle it.’
Emotional scenes: Elsewhere on the show, Kate’s Good Morning Britain co-host Ben Shephard appeared to be trying to fight back tears as he spoke about the news Derek would be returning with co-host Ranvir Singh
Last month, Kate revealed she had to rely on friends for financial support while off work during Derek’s Covid battle.
The Good Morning Britain host explained how although those in TV are ‘paid a good wage compared to the nurses keeping Derek alive’, she had to stop earning ‘quite suddenly’ last March and turned to pals for support.
Kate said: ‘Working in television, everybody does get paid a good wage compared with the nurses who are keeping Derek alive. But that obviously stopped quite suddenly last March.’
The star said she worried she’d sound like she was ‘pleading poverty’ and added that she’s had to think about things she never contemplated before Derek’s illness.
Finances: Kate has reportedly spent ‘thousands’ on renovating their family home to support Derek’s return. It was revealed last week that Kate has taken control of her husband’s business affairs, a year after he contracted Covid
Kate admitted a major learning curve was the legal side of things, saying: ‘I haven’t really got my head round the legal situation. I’ve been in a continual survival mode. Just thinking, let’s get through today.’
She explained that since Derek’s been in hospital she’s not been able to access his credit card accounts or their joint savings.
Kate even revealed she’s not allowed to see her husband’s medical notes because of data protection and them not giving each other power of attorney.
The mother-of-two said she recalled having a chat with Derek about how they should do this, however it never came about, with her saying she probably brushed it off by saying some joke like: ‘You’re not being mine’
Kate also reflected on how she’s been faced with a long-line of problems to fix at home as well as working out childcare for her two children on her own.
She detailed how during the past 12 months their family car has broken down and the replacement was stolen. And while self-isolating to visit Derek in hospital the family’s fridge-freezer broke followed by a flood and failed heating.
Adding to the list of bad luck, just two days before Christmas Kate even had to call her agent, who also reps Emma Willis who works for Marks and Spencer, to sort some food for Kate and her children to have over the festive period.
Battle: Kate filmed every step of Derek’s, pictured, year long battle with COVID-19 following his hospitalisation with the respiratory illness in March 2020 with the fly-on-the-wall programme aired on Tuesday
It comes after Kate stated she has been ‘absolutely overwhelmed’ by the positive reaction to her documentary Finding Derek documentary that documented her husband’s struggle.
Kate returned to GMB after the emotional Kate Garraway: Finding Derek documentary aired and said: ‘It’s been absolutely overwhelming in a really wonderful way.’
She said: ‘We spoke on Tuesday morning about how it was quite a difficult decision to think about filming it, but you hoped it would bring some comfort to some people or perhaps shine a light on a situation that… or for a group of people who might be suffering away in a way that hasn’t been focused on.
‘I’ve had so many comments from people. The reaction has been extraordinary. I’ve had so many messages from people talking not just about COVID, but about experiences in their own life, where some of the things we touched on have impacted.’
During the documentary, Kate said she might have to ‘fall in love again’ with Derek while she later comforted her sobbing husband who said he wanted to ‘die’.
Kate filmed every step of Derek’s year long battle with COVID-19 following his hospitalisation with the respiratory illness with the fly-on-the-wall programme.
During the emotional hour-long documentary, Kate planned for an uncertain future with Derek, as she admitted: ‘There’s been times where I’ve thought: “Am I actually grieving for the person I’m married to or am I fighting to hold onto that person?”‘
While later, in a heartbreaking video call with her husband in November, Derek broke down in tears and said he wanted to ‘die’ to which Kate insisted: ‘I promised you I will save you and I’m going to save you.’
Heartbreaking: The documentary, filmed at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, focused on Derek’s plight after falling gravely ill with the virus and Kate’s desperate battle to care for her husband while planning for an uncertain future
The documentary, filmed at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, focused on Derek’s plight after falling gravely ill with the virus and Kate’s desperate battle to care for her husband while planning for an uncertain future.
In heartbreaking footage filmed from November 2020, Kate was asked whether she would be okay if her husband is ‘not her Derek’ anymore once he is out of hospital.
To which the presenter admitted: ‘Well, he is still Derek, he is still him… he is still that person that you love, but he will behave differently and will be physically different.
‘Will I be okay? I won’t be delighted because I wouldn’t wish that on him, very tough on us both, but he is for better or worse…’
Reflecting on their future, Kate continued: ‘It might be a rather beautiful thing, trying to look at it as a rather beautiful thing. I feel as though we might have to fall in love again – find out who each other are now a little bit.’
Future: In heartbreaking footage filmed from November 2020, Kate was asked whether she would be okay if her husband is ‘not her Derek’ anymore once he is out of hospital, to which she said: ‘It might be a rather beautiful thing, trying to look at it as a rather beautiful thing. I feel as though we might have to fall in love again’
Kate then met with a clinical psychologist who works in intensive care units as they discussed what the future could look like for Derek and what he might go through as he adapts to life back home.
The medical professional noted that from a ‘psychological perspective’, a quarter of patients have trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), low moods and anxiety, as well as memory, attention and concentration difficulties.
Kate admitted that she was trying to ‘piece together’ the life they had before but it was ‘quite complicated’ to which the psychologist noted there is no ‘straight answer’ during recovery.
Reflecting on the challenging time, Kate said: ‘There’s been times where I’ve thought: “Am I actually grieving for the person I’m married to or am I fighting to hold onto that person?” Should I be trying to fight to hold onto that person or should I be trying to adjust?’
To which the psychologist noted that loved ones are in a ‘powerless position’ as they are looking for things they recognise in patients to ‘give them hope’.
Later during the documentary, a heartbreaking moment filmed in November saw Kate speak to husband Derek over FaceTime where he broke down in tears and said he wants his life to end.
Kate said: ‘In many ways Derek is showing signs of improvement, but his mental state is worryingly unpredictable.’
During an emotional video call in November, the former lobbyist and political advisor said: ‘There’s no way out…’ to which Kate replied: ‘What do you mean, there’s no way out of what?’
Derek added: ‘I’m at the point, f**k it, just f**k it’ with Kate asking: ‘As in die? No, no,’ to which her husband emotionally admitted: ‘Yes.’
With Derek adding: ‘I don’t know how to cope, I don’t know how to cope.’
Advice: Kate then met with a clinical psychologist who works in intensive care units as they discussed what the future could look like for Derek and what he might go through as he adapts to life back home
Comforting her husband, the presenter continued: ‘You don’t know how to cope with it? Okay… I know you feel like you’re trapped in your head and it must be terrifying.
‘But you’re coming home, you’re coming back to your life and you will be the person even better than you were before. You will be.
‘I will find a way to make it better, okay? I promised you I will save you and I’m going to save you. I will find a way but you just have to hang in there, okay?’
Talking after the emotional moment, Kate said: ‘You’ll have a step forward, two steps back, you’ll have what seems like a huge breakthrough, and then the next minute, he sort of mouths: “Sorry, goodbye.” I’m saying: “You’re not going to die, you’re not going to die, you’re not going to die.” We’ve just got to get through it.’
Prior to this, Kate had shown footage of Derek following his return to consciousness in July, four months after his admission to intensive care, where he had mouthed the word ‘pain – his first verbal communication since being stricken with coronavirus.
In a different emotional part during the documentary, Kate also showed a video of Derek crying as he ‘responded’ to his wife to which she said of the milestone: ‘We’ve got him back!’
Children: During the fly-on-the-wall documentary, Kate and Derek’s children also spoke about their father’s recovery as it showed emotional footage of them FaceTiming their dad in hospital
During the fly-on-the-wall documentary, Kate and Derek’s children, also spoke about their father’s recovery as it showed emotional footage of them FaceTiming their dad in hospital.
In footage filmed over the summer, Darcey admitted that she has not ‘thought the worse’ during her father’s recovery while Billy noted that they don’t know whether their dad will ‘get better or not’.
Darcey said: ‘I’ve not really thought the worse, I’ve always said he’s going to get better, he’s going to get back – all of this stuff.
‘They say that we’ve heard rumours he will get back, hopefully, before the end of next year but we really don’t know at all.’
Billy then showed off his Lego collection from his birthday, he said: ‘Dad usually does Lego with me the most but since dad is not here… I’ve started to do it myself.’
Billy joked that Derek is a ‘big kid’, he emotionally added: ‘I really want him back but we don’t know if he’s going to get better or not. So…’
‘Scary’: Darcey was asked by the interviewer whether it was ‘scary’ seeing her father in hospital, to which she said: ‘I mean it’s not really scary, it looks scary. It’s just scary in the way of thinking we might lose him.’ (pictured together in 2019)
Darcey was then asked whether they expected their father to return home for Christmas. Later during the documentary, the family were able to visit Derek over the festive period, it was the first time they had all seen him since he was hospitalised.
The teenager said: ‘I hope so… it’s hard, he might still be hooked up to things he needs to help him survive.’
Darcey was asked by the interviewer whether it was ‘scary’ seeing her father in hospital, to which she said: ‘I mean it’s not really scary, it looks scary. It’s just scary in the way of thinking we might lose him.’
While Kate added: ‘Derek is probably the cleverest person I’ve ever met with a kind of incredible ability of precise thinking, analysis, humour and everything. You just think… is that gone? Is he going to be able to come back or will he be alive but no longer the person he was?’
Later in the documentary, in scenes filmed in February, Kate reflected on their Christmas time together, she said: ‘We were very lucky that Darcey and Billy and I got to spend time with Derek.
‘Lucky’: Later in the documentary, in scenes filmed in February, Kate reflected on their Christmas time together, she said: ‘ We were very lucky that Darcey and Billy and I got to spend time with Derek.’
‘Really good, we played Frustration [game] and he remembered the rules. He remembered the rules of Frustration, you played it with him [Billy]. Quite unbelievable, Bill didn’t let him win!
‘It was really lovely, lots of things we used to do with him that can still be done, but it’s also a reminder of how far there is to go.’
Elsewhere during the documentary, footage filmed in August 2020 when Kate first returned back to work at Good Morning Britain amid Derek’s battle was shown.
Kate was reunited with her co-host Ben Shephard as he praised her for her ‘positivity’ but admitted he was scared that she could ‘crash’ at some point in the future.
Ben, 46, said: ‘Our relationship goes back 20 years when we first started working together at GMTV and we have been through everything together.’
Return to work: Elsewhere during the documentary, it showed footage filmed in August 2020 when Kate first returned back to work at Good Morning Britain amid Derek’s battle
Praise: Kate was reunited with her co-host Ben Shephard as he praised her for her ‘positivity’ but admitted he was scared that she could ‘crash’ at some point in the future
He continued: ‘Kate is brilliant at sharing what she is going through, she has always been really aware that people could very easily think she’s looking for sympathy, that she’s looking for support, she’s not at all.
‘It’s not just her going through this. But if her voice can represent some of those families that can’t be heard like she can be heard, hopefully it can make a huge difference down the line.’
‘It’s testament to who she is, her strength of character, positivity, her brilliance she has got this far and managed it so well.
‘I just keep thinking at some point there’s going to be a huge crash, that at some point, maybe, hopefully… we have a big move in how Derek is with his recovery or Derek comes home. It’s going to hit her, what she has been through.’
Later in the documentary, it showed footage of Derek breaking down in tears and mouthing the word ‘pain’ after waking from his coma with Kate left crying over the milestone.
Milestones: Later in the documentary, it showed footage of Derek breaking down in tears and mouthing the word ‘pain’ after waking from his coma with Kate left crying over the milestone
Derek was overcome with emotion after Kate video-called him following his return to consciousness in July, four months after his admission to intensive care.
‘He’s back,’ Kate said. ‘We’ve been waiting a long time to speak to you. I’m so proud of you. I’m so proud of you.’
The political advisor was also given the opportunity to speak to children Darcey and Billy via FaceTime, with his youngest showing off a Millennium Falcon constructed from Lego bricks especially for his return.
Kate said: ‘So that’s the first time he’s showed any emotion, which is huge. He’s got to find that confidence he can do it now, he can claw his way out of it. He’s definitely present, you can see it in his eyes… every time a little bit more of him.’
In further scenes filmed in October, the heartbroken presenter could only watch powerlessly as Derek mouthed the word ‘pain’ – his first verbal communication since being stricken with coronavirus.
Emotional: Derek was overcome with emotion after Kate video-called him following his return to consciousness in July, four months after his admission to intensive care
Another moving clip from the documentary saw Kate meet with a community nurse who contracted coronavirus in May 2020 and is still unable to work due to the impact of the virus on their body.
Talking after meeting up, the presenter reflected: ‘I just fear for a future and pandemic of mental ill health. Anxiety in itself makes you ill. A very tough future ahead I think at this point.’
Kate also spoke to a woman called Julie, whose husband Steve contracted coronavirus in March 2020, as well as his twin brother Bobby. Steve is still in hospital nearly a year on while Bobby has been discharged.
Giving his advice to both Julie and Kate over a video call during their husbands’ recoveries, Bobby said: ‘The only medication is love, it’s the most powerful thing you can have.’
Family: The former lobbyist and political advisor was also given the opportunity to speak to children Darcey and Billy via FaceTime, with his youngest showing off a Millennium Falcon constructed from Lego bricks especially for his return
Elsewhere during the documentary, Kate admitted she was stunned after a well meaning friend suggested she could back out of her marriage to Derek because his current predicament ‘wasn’t what she signed up for.’
Addressing the camera, she revealed: ‘Somebody said to me the other day, “You are allowed to say this isn’t what I signed up for and get out.” And I was like, “Oh my god.”
‘I mean, I know they meant it weirdly kindly, as if almost giving me license. But I said, “I can’t think that! He’s in there!”‘
In scenes filmed in November, Kate met with an occupational therapist as they discussed the layout of their home and prepared it for Derek’s return.
The footage showed the presenter making their North London property wheelchair accessible and installed a hospital bed in the lounge as the virus has damaged the former lobbyist’s muscles.
Sad: Kate spoke to a woman called Julie, pictured, whose husband Steve contracted coronavirus in March 2020, as well as his twin brother Bobby. Steve is still in hospital nearly a year on while Bobby has been discharged.
The broadcaster transformed the ground floor of their house last year as she hoped the author would have recovered before the third lockdown, but sadly, his condition hasn’t improved.
Talking about the works at their home, Kate said: ‘If I have to give up work to care for him, then best to do it now… while I’m earning money.
‘If he needs 24hr care, I will be the primary carer, I have a fear of the reality of that life it’s a completely different dynamic to our relationship.’
However it’s understood that the presenter has no plans to step down from her role at Good Morning Britain as Derek continues his slow recovery.
A spokesperson told MailOnline: ‘Kate will not be giving up her role on GMB, in fact, her job has been something of a lifeline and really kept her spirits up over this past year and she has no plans to change that.’
Preparations: In November, Kate met with an occupational therapist as they discussed the layout of their home and prepared it for Derek’s return
During the end of the documentary, Kate was surprised with a phone call from Elton John as he sent love to the presenter’s family and Derek.
Elton, 73, said: ‘I pray for him every night. He’s in my prayers and you, your family. He’s an amazing man, please give him my love.’
Kate revealed that her son Billy has picked Elton’s 1972 hit Rocket Man as a ‘really good’ song for Derek’s recovery as the family resonate with the lyrics.
Accessible: The footage showed the presenter making their North London property wheelchair accessible and installed a hospital bed in the lounge, pictured, as the virus has damaged the former lobbyist’s muscles
Elsewhere, in further footage from February, Kate admitted that she has to be ‘forcefully positive’ towards Derek, she said: ‘I’ve never loved Derek more or feared losing him more.’
She added: ‘I say to him, you believe you’ll get better don’t you, because you will, very forcefully positive and he says: “Yes.”
‘So I say: “What is it then?” and he says: “It’s the how, it’s the how.” I know completely what he means by that, he has a sense he’s in there, he has Derek in his head but how to get it out. How to go back to the life.’
At the end of the documentary, it offered viewers an update in Derek’s recovery with the former lobbyist’s rehabilitation continuing and doctors extending ‘the option of keeping him in hospital until December 2021.’
Support: During the end of the documentary, Kate was surprised with a phone call from Elton John, pictured right in 2019, as he sent love to the presenter’s family and Derek
In an emotional ending, it showed a sweet recent FaceTime between Derek and Kate where he said: ‘Thank you, I love you forever and a day,’ to which Kate replied: ‘Oh darling, I love you.’
Myleene Klass led the stars praising Kate, taking to Twitter after the documentary, Myleene praised her ‘courageous’ friend Kate while fellow stars Piers Morgan, Alison Hammond and Charlotte Hawkins shared their support for the presenter.
Myleene, who has spoke about her close friendship with the star and threw a garden party for Kate’s son Billy over the summer, tweeted: ‘Thinking of my lovely friend @kategarraway tonight with her documentary #FindingDerek on @ITV at 9pm.
‘It’s so heartbreaking, we’re all just praying Derek will find a way back. Please watch & send love to Kate & her family.’
Recovery: At the end of the documentary, it offered viewers an update in Derek’s recovery with the former lobbyist’s rehabilitation continuing and doctors extending ‘the option of keeping him in hospital until December 2021’
Elsewhere, Piers tweeted: ‘This is heart-breaking. #FindingDerek @kategarraway.’ while Alison commented: ‘This is heart breaking but also so inspiring #FindingDerek How amazing is @kategarraway @ITV.’
Kate’s GMB co-star Charlotte shared: ‘Thinking of my lovely friend @kategarraway tonight with her documentary #FindingDerek on @ITV at 9pm.
‘It’s so heartbreaking, we’re all just praying Derek will find a way back. Please watch & send love to Kate & her family.’
Lorraine Kelly noted: ‘Heartbreaking but such courage, humanity and strength @kategarraway – you are incredible! #FindingDerek.’
While Coronation Street star Samia Longchambon added: ‘Oh @kategarraway you are so strong of spirit.. sending much love to you and your beautiful family. Here’s hoping you all have many brighter days together ahead #FindingDerek.’
Sweet: In an emotional ending, it showed a sweet recent FaceTime between Derek and Kate where he said: ‘Thank you, I love you forever and a day,’ to which Kate replied: ‘Oh darling, I love you.’
Kate’s Good Morning Britain co-star Ben, who also appeared on the documentary, also shared his support.
He tweeted: ‘So proud of my friend @kategarraway she continues to surprise, delight, occasionally infuriate but always inspire me.
‘Thinking of Kate, her family and anyone who is battling Covid or has lost someone close to them to the virus. #FindingDerek.’
Viewers were also left in tears over the programme as they took to Twitter to praise Kate for being ‘brave’ and ‘resilient’.
One person said: ‘Heartbreaking to watch #FindingDerek What a resilient, strong woman @kategarraway is. Thoughts are with her and her kids, they’re all so brave having to deal with this tragedy.’
Sweet: Myleene Klass led the stars praising Kate on Tuesday night after her ‘heartbreaking’ documentary Finding Derek
A different person put: ‘@kategarraway Kate you are beyond brave! An inspiration to us all and proof that love can conquer all! #findingderek.’
Another viewer commented: ‘Watching #FindingDerek omg my heart goes to you Kate , what an incredible and brave woman u are i am in tears watching it you are truly an amazing lady ! Keep fighting for Derek ! @kategarraway.’
While a different documentary watcher added: ‘What a brave lovely girl Kate Garraway is .Love will find a way #FindingDerek we truly hope.’
Kate discussed her new documentary on Good Morning Britain ahead of its airing, where she admitted it was important for her to remain upbeat for the sake of her husband.
She said: ‘The footage you see was recorded by me personally. After six months we got an iPad into the hospital with the idea of bringing him out so I could talk to him while he was in the coma and have some sort of voice recognition.
Lovely: Kate’s Good Morning Britain co-star Ben, who also appeared on the documentary, also shared his support
He tweeted: ‘So proud of my friend @kategarraway she continues to surprise, delight, occasionally infuriate but always inspire me.’
‘It was so emotional for me. It was all I could do not to fall apart, and give him a positive energy, not a sad energy.’
She added: ‘The moments you see are the moments where he is getting more conscious and can react, and also Derek has devoted his life to mental health since leaving politics because he’s a psychotherapist, so I feel that he would want his journey to be told. He would like to be here telling it with me. ‘
Reflecting on her decision to film the documentary, Kate admitted she wanted to use her platform as a presenter to help those who have been most affected by the virus, which has so far killed 126, 172 people across the United Kingdom.
She said: ‘First of all I do have a job that puts me on the TV and radio and there were many months where I was locked in that bubble that we all have been in because of COVID restrictions and that was a very private time.
Tears: Viewers were also left in tears over the programme as they took to Twitter to praise Kate for being ‘brave’ and ‘resilient’
‘When I got back to work I was moved by people’s reactions. I was contacted by people who said you’re talking about what I’m going through and it’s so great to hear, not just with COVID but with other long term situations that they are facing with potentially a life loss at the end of it. So this story, I thought I have a chance to tell it where they don’t.’
The presenter also reiterated that she will not walk away from her day job in order to provide round the clock care for Derek when he is released from hospital.
She said: ‘I’m not going anywhere! In fact the reality is, is that ITV and Global and Smooth radio, everybody has been so supportive and to be honest being here has kept me sane.
‘Not just because you’re all amazing supporters but people at home are so supportive and it’s a slice of normal, it’s a slice of life before.
‘The truth is as much as I like to think I have all the answers sometimes, Derek doesn’t need me, I’m not the person to care for him.
DEREK DRAPER’S CORONAVIRUS BATTLE
March 30, 2020: Derek is admitted to a London hospital after testing positive for the novel coronavirus COVID-19, little more than a week after Britain enters its first national lockdown
April 3, 2020: Derek is admitted to intensive care four days after his hospitalisation. As his condition steadily worsens, he falls into a coma.
May 28, 2020: Kate reveals that Derek remains in a coma and is continuing to be cared for by NHS professionals.
June 5, 2020: The presenter tells Good Morning Britain viewers that Derek is “Covid free”, although the family are unsure if he will ever recover from the ravages of the illness.
July 5, 2020: Kate reveals that Derek has finally woken from his coma and has opened his eyes – her first communication with her husband since March
July 13, 2020: Kate resumes her presenting role on Good Morning Britain after taking time off amid Derek’s ongoing illness.
July 14, 2020: Kate tells viewers she is preparing to visit Derek in hospital for the first time.
July 21, 2020: Derek hears Kate’s voice after nurses play Good Morning Britain in his hospital room. During her appearance on the show Kate confirms she is preparing to visit him for a second time.
August 19, 2020: After being absent for three days Kate tells viewers she has tried not to break down after being kept apart from Derek on his 53rd birthday.
September 10, 2020: Kate and Derek remain apart during their milestone 15th Wedding Anniversary , with the presenter unable to visit her husband.
September 11, 2020: Kate reveals Derek is still unable to speak but admits plans to visit him in hospital for a belated anniversary celebration.
September 29, 2020: Derek’s six-month long battle against COVID-19 becomes one of the longest known cases in the United Kingdom.
October 30, 2020: Derek is finally able to communicate verbally after 214 days in hospital. His first word – “pain.”
January 7, 2021: Kate reveals her two children saw Derek for the first time since he fell ill during the Christmas period
‘I will obviously be there completely, 100% if that would make a difference but actually what Derek needs is specialist, professional, medical support ongoing because there is a good chance he can improve but we need to make sure that support is there now for that to happen.
‘Whether that be remaining in hospital or whether that be something else – I would like to be home – but it is not just a case of you know I would want to sit there and hold his hand but people in this situation need expertise and I’m not an expert.’
Despite radical changes to his physical appearance, Kate admitted those who know Lancashire born Derek will be able to see that his personality is still very much present.
Speaking out: Kate discussed her new documentary on Good Morning Britain ahead of its airing, where she admitted it was important for her to remain upbeat for the sake of her husband.
She said: ‘There are moments where I think people who know Derek will know he’s there, and for a while that was part of the horror… is he still there? There’s even some Chorley in there. Even COVID can’t take Chorley out of the man!’
Kate also praised the couple’s children for their ability to cope with the unexpected and abrupt change to their home-life over the last 12 months.
‘They are fundamentally extraordinary,’ she said. ‘They have coped tremendously well. They cope with it in their different ways. They’ve both seen the documentary. I was comforted by the fact that they’ve seen a lot of things that may be a shock to others as they’ve spoken to him on FaceTime.
‘They watched it back, and Billy said ”I can’t believe they got me on the trampoline before I mastered a backflip!” When he said that, I realised we were OK. It’s a compliment to Derek as he’s instilled so much confidence in them.’
She added: ‘This time yesterday last year, terrible things happened. It’s affected everyone in different ways. We’ve all been through something, so hopefully we can stick together. Please realise we are still smiling. Love to all of you, and love to Derek.’
Kate previously recalled the ‘devastating’ moment her husband told her he feared he couldn’t go on while he was in hospital with coronavirus.
The presenter told The Mirror: ‘After that call, it was then time to go into GMB and go on air, having been up all night, it was a tough night actually.
‘But everyone at ITV has been so incredibly supportive. I managed to get through. During this whole time, working on GMB and Smooth Radio has helped me to keep going and keep my spirits up.’
While Covid is no longer in Derek’s system, the virus left him battling kidney failure, liver failure, heart failure and damage to his pancreas.
Kate added: ‘And in the end, I said to him, “Just stay with me, I’m going to keep talking to you”. And he was obviously exhausted. Because that’s the other thing, is that the tiniest thing completely exhausts him.’
Old times: Kate and Derek exchanged vows in Camden in 2005. The presenter was previously married to ITV Meridian boss Ian Rumsey from 1998 to 2002
The broadcaster said that even Derek voicing his feelings like that would have taken a huge amount out of him as he has such little energy.
Kate spoke to her husband on the drive into work that day and then told the doctor’s to put on Good Morning Britain so he could see her.
The presenter first invited a film crew into her home last September with the hope that the film would end with Derek returning home.
But seven months later, the documentary instead focuses on Derek’s year in hospital as well as the many months of recovery that are left.
Derek has lost eight stone amid his health battle with Kate revealing the children have not seen him in person at all this year.
She added the kids did visit Derek over Christmas and described it as a ‘shock’ to see the physical change in him.
Kate has made the ground floor of her home wheelchair accessible and is looking ahead to visiting Derek in hospital as soon as lockdown is eased.
Kate, who acknowledges there is still a long way to go in Derek’s road to recovery, thinks the couple’s relationship may be changed forever.
During an appearance on The One Show, Kate said Derek is ‘trapped in the middle ground’ as he is sometimes able to communicate with her before slipping out of consciousness.
Kate said: ‘One of things I’m here to talk about is the documentary and what you will see is that this time last year, I was, like a lot of us, wondering what was coming our way.
‘I was fearing the worst, on air reading headlines about the earliest cases of people contracting coronavirus and then I suddenly found myself right in the middle of it.
Tragic: Derek was admitted to hospital in March after contracting the respiratory illness and was subsequently placed in a medically induced coma before he awoke in July (pictured in hospital)
‘And I’d say there was weeks and months of living minute by minute, wondering if I was going to get the call to say whether he lived or died.’
Kate went on to explain that while Derek has survived COVID, he is ‘trapped in the middle ground’.
Derek was admitted to hospital in March after contracting the respiratory illness and was subsequently placed in a medically induced coma before he awoke in July.
She said: ‘Derek is an extreme case, he has a prolonged disorder of consciousness which means that there is some reaction.
‘It’s not like what we see in movies where people are lying in a vegetative state, you know you can look at his eyes and before Christmas there was a lot of progress with some words and communication.’
Derek is considered to be the longest surviving COVID-19 patient in the country. On more than one occasion his heart stopped beating, he battled bacterial pneumonia and fought multiple infections which punctured holes in his lungs.
Kate said: ‘What I feel like is that I’m on a life boat somehow and he’s coming up and down. You’re on this precipice trying to hold onto him.
‘There’ll be moments where he bubbles up and you have contact with him on FaceTime because of the Covid restrictions. It feels like you’re going to have to fill him with so much positivity because he’s going to sink down.’
The GMB host said there will be ‘heartbreaking moments’ in the documentary, as when he does regain consciousness, viewers will see ‘what must be agony for him’.
Kate continued: ‘His brain has always been his best friend. Suddenly his brain is no longer his best friend and he’s fighting to get out.It’s very, very tough. But if it’s tough for me, it must be tougher for him.
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 that Derek had ‘opened his eyes’ after waking from his coma, but has been told his recovery could take years.
On July 13, Kate returned to GMB for the first time since Derek was hospitalised.
On July 28, Kate revealed she’d paid an ‘extra emotional’ first visit to Derek, and admitted she’s ‘frustrated’ by his slow progress.
On August 14, Kate reassured GMB viewers that Derek was ‘still with us,’ but it was ‘a waiting game.’
On August 19, Kate revealed she celebrated Derek’s birthday with their two children, and described the day as ‘challenging’ for her family.
At the end of September, Derek reportedly becomes the longest surviving patient with coronavirus after spending 184 days in and out of intensive care.
Kate reveals Derek has lost eight stone during his battle.
The presenter announces she is returning to her Smooth Radio show so Derek can hear her voice.
On October 30 Kate reveals that Derek has spoken for the first time in seven months, saying the word ‘pain’ to his wife, who watched on ‘in tears’ over FaceTime.
Kate says a day later that her husband no longer needs a ventilator to breathe.
Kate reveals her family car has been stolen in latest ‘body blow’ to her family life, as kind-hearted fans offer their cars to help.
She says she feels ‘physically sick’ at the prospect of facing her first Christmas without Derek.
The GMB star tells viewers it is her dream to visit Derek on Christmas Day.
She also reveals she missed two weeks on GMB after her children were exposed to the virus, but thankfully she and the kids tested negative.
On December 17, Kate has an emotional conversation live on GMB with two nurses who treated Derek when he was first admitted to Whittington Hospital in North London.
On New Year’s Eve she reflects on a ‘calamitous’ Christmas without Derek, as her house was flooded and she struggled to get a food delivery slot until her pal Emma Willis stepped in to help.
Kate reveals she and her children got to visit Derek in hospital over the Christmas period, and it was the first time her family had seen him since he was hospitalised.
She also says she’s banned from seeing him due to new restrictions introduced during the government’s third lockdown.
Kate reveals she is unsure how much Derek will ‘ever be able to recover’ following warning from doctors that he may never wake from his coma