BEN Shephard has said that his friend Kate Garraway needs to return to work at Good Morning Britain to “get on with life” while her husband Derek remains in hospital.
The 45-year-old presenter insisted that coming back to the studio on Monday is the the best thing for her, with Derek remaining in intensive care following his coronavirus battle.
Kate, 53, broke down in tears as she appeared on the breakfast show with Piers Morgan and Susanna Reid yesterday, opening up about her family’s ongoing struggle.
However, she also revealed that she’ll be returning to work on the programme from Monday, with Ben saying today that it was a “huge and important” move.
Speaking at the start of today’s GMB, Ben told viewers: “There were some lovely messages from lots of people yesterday, it was really great to see Kate in the studio smiling, talking very honestly and openly as she has done about the condition that Derek is in.
“He continues to be critical – although he is out of a coma and they can FaceTime him it’s not simple.”
He then shared the clip of Kate announcing her upcoming return, which will be alongside Ben as Piers and Susanna have already kickstarted their lengthy summer holiday.
Back in the studio, the host continued: “She needs to come back for her own peace of mind, just to be able to have a bit of focus in the day and a sense of help.
“It’s so hard, she’s been trapped in that world for so long and that doesn’t stop.
“She’s incredibly resilient, strong, and positive – but for her own mental health she needs to come on and get on with life.
“It doesn’t mean the care for Derek is going to be any less or any focused.”
Ben also reflected on a “fantastic day” with Kate, her children – 14-year-old Darcey and 10-year-old Billy – and his own family; with Annie, and sons Jack, 15, and 13-year-old Sam.
He shared: “We saw Kate and the kids a few weekends ago when we could finally all get together.
“We spent a really lovely day at a lake just off the Thames where you can go and paddleboard, we had the most fantastic day with the kids.
“It was great as it’s such a big space and you can spend time together but be outdoors – we could see each other in real life.”
The star mused: “I think it’s a huge and important moment, seeing her in real life – it’s the reality of what they’re going through, it’s so much more tangible.”
While recent months have weighed heavy on her, Kate insisted yesterday that Derek would want her to return to the show – and that she wants their children to have a “future”.
She added: “Derek would not just be saying come back, he’d be saying, ‘why haven’t you done it before?’
“As he got into the ambulance he said, ‘Go inside and make them feel safe, because they’re going to be panicking about this.’
“That would be his priority.”
Kate revealed in an interview at the weekend that Derek had emerged from his coma in hospital and even opened his eyes.
She said: “When medical staff say, ‘Good morning, Derek,’ he sometimes opens his eyes. We and the doctors are doing everything we can so that he can start to recover.”
However, in a rare social media post she also sounded a note of caution, saying the day he returned home having recovered still seemed “very uncertain” amid these “ghastly times”.
In March, the former political adviser was taken into hospital suffering from coronavirus.
He begged to be put into a coma because he felt he was “suffocating”.
The 52-year-old has now opened his eyes but has “minimum consciousness” according to Kate.