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Kate Garraway has spoken of her “outpouring of love for everyone that has supported me” in her first appearance on ITV’s Good Morning Britain following her husband’s death.
Speaking from home via video, she said her “emotions are at 110%” after Derek Draper’s funeral on Friday.
Draper died in January after living with extreme complications from Covid.
The TV host will return to hosting the show on Thursday, alongside Ben Shephard.
In an emotional interview, Garraway said it was a “stop the clock” moment when she learned her husband was going to die.
Speaking about his final moments, Garraway said her 17-year-old daughter Darcey told her father: “Don’t worry about us, don’t worry about mum. We’ll be fine because you live on through us.”
The TV host was able to say goodbye to her husband and had “a chance to hold his hand and smell his skin”, something “some people don’t get”.
She also discussed Darcey’s role as a pallbearer at the service, saying: “She insisted on doing it and I thought it was a beautiful thing.”
Draper’s funeral was attended by figures including former prime minister Sir Tony Blair, musician Sir Elton John and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer.
The service was held on Friday at the Church of St Mary The Virgin in Primrose Hill, north-west London.
Former political lobbyist-turned-psychologist Draper married the GMB presenter at the same church in September 2005.
The 56-year-old presenter said she was “grateful” for the “unbelievable love” that she has received in a book of condolences from viewers, and the “extraordinary” messages her family received from unexpected places.
“I had the most beautiful letter from David and Victoria Beckham – handwritten, very good handwriting… that was Darcey’s observation,” she told viewers.
The TV host also received a “beautiful letter” from the Royal Family and “even the King, because there is somebody knows about grief, that anticipatory grief where you know something has a risk of happening and how different it is when it does happen”.
‘Life has to start’
On her return to the daytime TV show, Garraway joked that she was “looking forward to a blow-dry”.
She said she will be cracking out the fake eyelashes and fake tan, adding: “Don’t worry – I am going to be looking a lot more respectable.”
She went on: “I am looking forward to coming into the world and connecting with everyone again.
“Thank you for having me back but have a little patience, I might be a bit rusty.”
Asked about whether it was too early to return to work she said: “Life has to start. We have to pick ourselves up and go on. That’s what Derek would want me to do.”
Garraway also paid tribute to carers in her interview.
“We have so much brilliance in our medical profession, and so much skill, but we need to have a different system of supporting, caring, and also anything that really happens once you’re not in the life and death moment.
“But I think for people watching that are in a caring position, they will know two things – how unbelievably hard it is, but what an honour, and how much I wish I was caring today.
“Because it’s an incredible thing to be that line of defence against the world.”
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