ENTERTAINMENT
09/04/2021 08:43 BST | Updated 09/04/2021 08:47 BST

Kate Garraway Describes Emotional Moment Husband Derek Draper Returned Home From Hospital: ‘He Immediately Burst Into Tears’

"It just feels like the start of a huge chapter - but a really big and important one.”

Kate Garraway has spoken for the first since her husband Derek Draper returned home from hospital, a year after being admitted with Covid-19.

The 53-year-old former political adviser was admitted in March last year before being placed in a coma.

He was driven by ambulance to the couple’s north London home on Wednesday.

During an emotional interview on Friday’s Good Morning Britain, Kate described the moment Derek arrived home.

“As we came home I could see two little faces of [the couple’s children] Darcey and Billy at the window and they sort of ran to the door and he immediately burst into tears and there was a lot of hugging,” Kate said.

“We got him inside and he absolutely knew he was home. He is responding all the time. What he’s not able to do is talk and say ‘why the hell is the place such a mess?’ It’s not like that but he is absolutely responding and aware.”

Kate went on to describe how setting the table for four people for the first time in a year was a big moment for her and their two children.

“There have been so many lovely little moments,” she said. “Like I’ve been saying to him all the time during the coma ’when you get home you  can have one of my casseroles - which he loves by the way, that’s not a threat - because he can swallow a bit now.

“I said let’s see if we can get around a table, all four of us, so we sort of managed to do that.

“And as I was laying out the plates, I was laying out four - it makes me cry now - and Darcey was saying ‘Oh we’re going to put four spoons down’. It just feels like the start of a huge chapter but a really big and important one.”

Kate also opened up about the level of care that Derek will need at home.

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Derek Draper and Kate Garraway pictured in 2009

“It’s a very unique situation,” Kate explained. “While the doctors have made it clear that they wouldn’t have allowed him home if there was any risk to his health… it was really looking at his cognition, looking at his consciousness and trying to think what would be the best way to improve that.

“You saw in the documentary there have been improvements - he’s using more words and there are more things he can do now, he’s got some more movement in his hands - but it felt as if everything had stalled medically and if anything, we were going slightly back. 

“Obviously with Covid restrictions in place, I couldn’t visit, family couldn’t visit, even some of the therapeutic things couldn’t happen. So, taking all of that into account they said ‘right, let’s give this a go, let’s get him home safely’. So it does feel like the hospital has come home with me at the moment, and then see how being in a family environment…. It’s been amazing.”

She continued: “He can’t really move so he does need a lot of help. It is 24-hour care. It’s a whole new team 

“We really want to move forward and see 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 a ‘wait and see’.”

Good Morning Britain airs weekdays at 6am on ITV.