Published On: Thu, Apr 29th, 2021

Susanna Reid praises Kate Garraway’s book about husband Derek Draper

Kate Garraway‘s daughter asked her if she was going to ‘kill herself’ amid her husband Derek Draper’s coronavirus battle.

The 53-year-old TV presenter’s significant other is still battling the after-effects of coronavirus and he is now receiving 24-hour care at home after spending 12 months in hospital, but Kate was stunned when their daughter Darcey, 15, asked her ‘out of the blue’ if she was planning to take her own life.

The ‘Good Morning Britain‘ host – who also has son Billy, 11, with Derek – said: ‘They [their kids] were at times wondering if I was going to be OK, was I going to be able to keep going.

‘Darcey at one point actually said, ‘Mum – are you going to kill yourself?’ Out of the blue. ‘The thing is, that sounds horrific, obviously.

‘But if you know Darcey, she’s really blunt. She will always go to the most awful thing you can imagine and work her way back.

‘She just came out with the sentence, and I said, ‘Oh my God, no. Why would you think that?’

‘She said, ‘I wasn’t, but I just thought I better check.’ ‘And I said, ‘If anything it’s the absolute opposite. I can’t imagine what would be more opposite. I’m so scared you thought of that.’

Close: Derek pictured with his two kids on Good Morning Britain as they supported Kate's I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! stint in 2019

Close: Derek pictured with his two kids on Good Morning Britain as they supported Kate’s I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! stint in 2019

‘And she was like, ‘Don’t make a big thing of it.’

‘It showed at the very least she wanted affirmation. And also made me realise she wasn’t just worried about her dad, but thinking of me and her brother.’

Kate admitted her kids have coped ‘amazingly’ with the uncertainty of not knowing whether their father would survive his battle with coronavirus and the after-effects, and she didn’t realise how much her children were looking after her during his one-year hospital stay.

She said: ‘I don’t think I realised how much they were taking care of me quite a lot along the way.

‘The first moment was they wanted to watch ‘Father Brown’ and I thought, ‘This is a very odd thing for a teenager to be choosing to watch.’

‘But I realised they knew I loved it, and they wanted to do things for me.’

Praise: Susanna Reid (left) praised Kate Garraway for her 'beautiful' book about her husband's Covid battle

Praise: The pair spoke about Kate's book on Thursday's Good Morning Britain

Praise: Susanna Reid (left) praised Kate for her ‘beautiful’ book about her husband’s Covid battle, saying she’d ‘done Derek proud’ on Thursday’s Good Morning Britain 

While Derek is able to say ‘some words’, he cannot have a conversation with people, but he is has been able to remember ‘lots of little details’ and react to things.

She explained: ‘Now, there are things he does which are miraculous. He remembers extraordinary things. He is saying some words.

‘But it’s definitely not a conversation, and he’s physically very changed. Everything has to be done for him.

‘So, we have a very different life.’

When asked how much of Derek she thinks she is ‘going to get back’, she replied: ‘I don’t know.

The couple had hoped they could spend proper time together as a family and be as safe as possible during the pandemic

The couple had hoped they could spend proper time together as a family and be as safe as possible during the pandemic

‘One of the great tragedies and ironies is Derek has always been about his brain and his extraordinary way of looking at the world.

‘What is there is he is still him. He remembers lots of little details, he reacts to things the kids do in the way he would’ve done before.

‘Not exactly the same way, obviously. He’s not telling them off, because he can’t.

‘He’s smiling and laughing at things.’

Kate admitted she feared at one point that Derek may never remember her and their kids.

Speaking on ‘This Morning’, she added: ‘For me, I just dreaded he wouldn’t remember us, which is rather selfish of me actually. Because I don’t know whether he would’ve been in a better or worse position.

‘At one point we thought we might be caring for him at home and we’d be strangers. And that’s terrifying for him, and strange for us.

‘But he definitely knows us, and he definitely is pleased to be home, and we’re so glad to have him home.’ 

Earlier in the day, Kate was praised for her ‘beautiful’ book by GMB co-host, who said she’d ‘done Derek proud’. 

The Good Morning Britain presenters appeared together on Thursday’s installment of the show, following the release of The Power of Hope, a raw and emotional memoir detailing the devastating impact Covid has had on Kate’s family. 

Discussing the memoir with Susanna and Ben Shephard, Kate revealed her relief at finally finishing the tome, joking there were ‘plenty of pictures’ for Ben to enjoy, while Susanna would enjoy the words. 

Susanna wasted no time getting stuck in, however, revealing: ‘I managed to have a speed read of it this morning. Beautiful book. I love it. Absolutely love it. You’ve done Derek proud.’

The emotional book details the very beginning of Derek’s illness in March 2020 when the couple initially thought he had sinusitis.

His condition deteriorated, prompting Kate to call Dr Hilary Jones who urged her to phone an ambulance immediately.

In The Power Of Hope, she pays tribute to ‘the brilliant team of doctors and specialists’ who’ve looked after him and how what they’ve learnt has helped the treatment of others. 

The mother-of-two describes how the toughest experience of her life began in March last year when Derek was taken to hospital with very low oxygen levels. 

As he was lifted into an ambulance, Kate said he told her: ‘This is not the last time you will see me. It isn’t.’ But she admits ‘he would never have said that if at least a small part of him hadn’t been wondering if it was.’

During the rollercoaster next few days, Kate truly feared her political lobbyist-turned-psychotherapist husband was going to die. In one phone call, he told her: ‘I want you at the funeral.’

‘His messages became more and more desperate. They were heart-breaking to read’, the journalist recalled.

Derek remains seriously ill and doctors say he was the most seriously sick patient to have survived the virus.

Earlier this month, the blonde told viewers on Good Morning Britain: ‘It has been wonderful having Derek at home. There have been lots of little positives – moments of recognition and reaction.’

Explaining why she had written the book, the Smooth Radio star said: ‘I’m painfully aware that Derek would have wanted to tell his own story if he could – and one day he still may.

‘I have tried to do him – and all those who love him – justice, and his love and life are present in every line.

‘On an emotional level, I hope readers will also draw something from how we, his family, have struggled to cope.’

On March 27, Derek woke up with a splitting headache and pain in his sinuses but it was initially dismissed as sinusitis before Kate spoke to ITV's Dr Hilary Jones who told her to call an ambulance- immediately

On March 27, Derek woke up with a splitting headache and pain in his sinuses but it was initially dismissed as sinusitis before Kate spoke to ITV’s Dr Hilary Jones who told her to call an ambulance- immediately

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