Kate Garraway pens touching tribute to late husband Derek Draper as family mark 'tough' milestone

Derek Draper, Kate Garraway and Darcey and Billy Draper

The family marked a sad milestone over the weekend

Olivia Gantzer

By Olivia Gantzer

Published: 17/06/2024

- 18:39

Fans rushed to support the grieving wife following the touching post

Kate Garraway penned an emotional tribute on social media as she and her two children marked their first Father's Day without her beloved husband Derek Draper.

Draper, 56, died in January following an almost four-year battle with Covid and the extreme medical complications which followed.

The former political lobbyist and psychotherapist was in hospital for more than a year from March 2020 after contracting the illness and required round-the-clock care when he finally returned home.

Good Morning Britain star Garraway, 57, revamped her home to accommodate Draper's needs and kept viewers updated on her husband's progress.

Sadly, on January 3 this year, Draper's condition deteriorated and he died "surrounded by" his family.

The couple's two children, Darcey, 18 and Billy, 14, had to experience one of the first milestones without their dad on Sunday, and Garraway shared a special tribute to her late husband to mark Father's Day.

Sharing three sweet snaps, one of the family together before Draper's illness took hold, the broadcaster penned: "So yesterday was one of those days the kids & I knew would be tough.

"#fathersday - the day when everyone wants to celebrate their daddy. We started by visiting Derek’s grave early - and talked about all the amazing things we loved about him, the daft things he did to make us laugh and all the things he has given us that we’ll never forget.

"We have so much to be grateful for. We’re also so grateful to still have my amazing dad in our lives and Derek’s dad too . >>> Brilliant Papa & Grandad."

Garraway continued the post: "Then thanks to my fab @global family we went to the #capitalsummertimeball - an amazing day of music & summer joy.

Kate and Derek in 2023

Derek died in January following a lengthy health battle


"It was sad coming home & not [finding] Derek waiting to hear “all about it” as he used to say.

"But so wonderful that we had him at all. I know for so many yesterday would have been a tough day so here’s to getting through and let’s celebrate all the wonderful fathers & father figures & what they gift us every day. #love #gratitude #letscelebratelife."

Supportive fans shared messages of sympathy in the comments, with one writing: "Heavenly Father’s Day Derrick…. Sending nothing but love and blessings to you and your family…. You’ve got this Kate."

"The missing of the ones we love and still Carry love for us is something we must learn to live with. The missing is the hardest part. The continuing to love them even when they are not here with us is even brave. 'A brave heart never runs cold of love,'" another wrote.

Kate Garraway and Billy Draper

Derek died in January after becoming one of the worst-affected Covid patients


"Thought about you and your family yesterday Kate. The firsts are hard. Sending lots of love to you," another remarked.

A fourth stated: "Lovely photo sending you all lots of love yesterday though day I miss my dad too much x."

"I thought about you and Darcy and Billy yesterday and how hard it must have been for you all. Big Hugs and lots of Love," another messaged, while someone else added: "Your strength is admirable." (sic)

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