Kate Garraway reveals how Elton John has become "a huge friend" amid Derek's recovery

18 September 2023, 16:30 | Updated: 18 September 2023, 16:44

Kate Garraway on Elton John's heartwarming tribute to her and Derek at the O2

By Tom Eames

Kate Garraway has opened up about the ongoing challenges her family faces during her husband Derek's recovery.

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Following the success of her book The Power of Hope, Kate Garraway's new release The Strength of Love is a book that continues her story of hope and love.

In the book, Kate reveals more details of how she and her family have coped with the enormous challenges of caring for her husband Derek. She also reflects on how the world has changed socially, politically and economically in the past three years. It is a book that celebrates the strength of love that can overcome the darkest days.

Kate spoke to her fellow Smooth presenter and friend Jenni Falconer about the book and the stories within it. You can watch a clip from the video above or exclusively on Global Player here.

Speaking about her friendship with Elton John, Kate told Jenni: "I think Elton has been a huge friend to me. I always feel like it's a bit arrogant to say he's a friend of mine, because... he's Elton! But he's been a massive friend, and he had a friend that was very sick in the US when Derek got sick.

Kate Garraway - The Strength of Love
Kate Garraway - The Strength of Love. Picture: Blink

"And so we sort of swapped thoughts. And he was trying to be helpful because the US were playing things very differently to we were back here, so we were trying to swap information. And then along the way he said, 'wouldn't it be wonderful if we had as a goal coming to see me in concert when I can restart my tour?'

"So we sort of had this goal and right up to the last moment didn't think it would happen and then it did and it was fantastic because even just the act of going to something like that was incredibly stimulating, there might be some people who say, 'well, wasn't it also exhausting?'.

"Yes, it was, but you're balancing motivation of hope, aren't you, with other things?"

Sir Elton John gives a shoutout to Kate Garraway and Derek Draper during his concert

On how Elton dedicated 'Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me' to Kate and Derek at the O2 Arena, Kate said: "We were all in tears. We were in absolute tears. And the people around us were so lovely.

"And funnily enough, I went back to the O2 for an awards ceremony with work, and one of the people [who worked there] said, 'oh, my God, I was on that night. I saw it and it was so amazing. We were all cheering back'.

"Because actually, I think everybody wants to feel that something special happens to people and it lifts everybody's spirits. But, yeah, it was incredible of him to do that.

"'Don't Let the Sun Go Down on Me', which just feels like such an appropriate song for the battle that we've all been going through and couldn't have been written better for that particular moment. And Derek went to bed that night and said, 'I won't let the sun go down on me'. And then we were all crying all over again."

Kate also opened up about recently sharing her 18th wedding anniversary with Derek, and the various positive ways of thinking which has helped Kate along the way, such as celebrating the good things in the present moment.

Watch the full interview on Global Player here.

The Strength of Love by Kate Garraway is out now, published by Blink.