KATE Garraway has revealed husband Derek Draper was left in tears as he was reunited with their two children for the first time in four months.
The presenter appeared on today's Good Morning Britain to update viewerson Derek's coronavirus battle and how he is doing since returning to their family home 48 hours ago.
Speaking to her GMB colleagues Ben Shephard and Ranvir Singh, she shared the heartwarming moment Derek was reunited with their children; Darcy 15, and Billy, 11, – and admitted it involved lots of hugs.
Kate began: "As we pulled up, I was able to come home with him, I could see two little faces of Darcey and Billy looking out of the window and I could literally see them go, 'He’s here!'
"They ran out and opened the door.
"He immediately burst into tears, there was a lot of hugging and got him inside.
"He absolutely knew he was home."
The family has been warned that he still faces a “long and gruelling” fight to full health – but are thrilled to be together again.
The Sun's Clemmie Moodie exclusively revealed yesterday that Derek is back home after more than a year in hospital fighting Covid.
The 53-year-old has been taken off all machines but will continue to receive round-the-clock care at the family’s adapted property in North London.
A friend said: “Kate’s dreamt of this day for so long, and can’t thank wonderful NHS staff enough.”
Kate’s two children have cried tears of joy at the return of their dad Derek, a friend revealed.
The family has been warned that he still faces a “long and gruelling” fight to full health.
But Good Morning Britain presenter Kate, 53, daughter Darcey, 15, and son Billy, 11, are naturally “thrilled” that medical experts have decided he could leave.
The family friend said: “The children, who have been so remarkably 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.”
Derek was driven by ambulance to the couple’s North London home on Wednesday.
He will have round-the-clock care as he battles to overcome the devastating effects of Covid-19.
But he is now regularly responding, and has been taken off all machines and breathing apparatus.
Former political spin doctor-turned-psychologist Derek has been confirmed as Britain’s longest surviving Covid hospital patient.
He was admitted with breathing difficulties on March 30 last year.
After being put on a ventilator, he spent months in a form of coma called PDOC — Prolonged Disorder of Consciousness.
In October, Derek uttered his first word — which heartbreakingly was “pain” — to express his discomfort.
Kate revealed that his body had been ravaged by the virus.
Doctors reported that he had been “universally affected” — meaning his lungs, heart, kidneys, liver and pancreas had all been hit by Covid.
And, at his worst, hospital staff feared Derek may remain in a semi-vegetative state forever.
The Sun can reveal that Kate — who has bravely continued working throughout much of her husband’s illness — has spent thousands of pounds adapting their home for his return.
She also faces medical bills running into the tens of thousands as Derek fights to get back to full fitness.
He is understood to be sleeping downstairs in a hospital bed, and will use a makeshift wet room for showering.
Since Derek’s plight came to light there has been an outpouring of support from the public for Kate.
Last month a moving ITV documentary, Finding Derek, left viewers in tears as cameras showed him smiling during a FaceTime call for the first time since falling ill.
Due to strict Covid regulations, neither Kate, the kids nor Derek’s elderly parents have been allowed to visit him much in hospital.
Kate was introduced to Derek through a mutual friend, ex-Labour MP Gloria De Piero, in 2004.
The couple met at London’s Claridge’s hotel and went on to marry the following year.
Wedding guests included Kate’s breakfast TV pals Fiona Phillips, Penny Smith and John Stapleton and former Strictly dancer Brendan Cole.
The couple were due to renew their vows to mark their 15-year anniversary last summer, but had to cancel due to Derek’s illness.
Two years ago Kate appeared on I’m A Celebrity . . . Get Me Out Of Here! and reportedly insisted on wearing her wedding ring throughout her time in the Australian jungle — despite jewellery being banned on the show.
Lancashire-born Derek was a key figure in the New Labour movement under Tony Blair before going on to retrain as a psychologist.
His return home comes ahead of the release later this month of Kate’s memoir, The Power of Hope — billed as a “story of love, fear and never giving up”.
Good Morning Britain airs weekdays on ITV from 6am and catch up on ITV Hub
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