Des was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2017 (Photo: ITV/REX).
Des O’Connor secretly fought Parkinson’s disease when he died.
The TV legend died at the age of 88, on the 14th. November, a week after a fall at her home in Buckinghamshire.
O’Connor’s widow, Jody Brooke Wilson, learned that her husband was diagnosed with Parkinson’s three years ago and is convinced that his fall – one of many – was a symptom of the disease.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, Wilson, 51, said Dez was very secretive about the case. He didn’t want people to feel sorry for him and what they thought at first when they saw him. He was diagnosed in 2017, but thinks he’s had it for a while.
Wilson, who met O’Connor 31 years ago and married him in 2007, said he first noticed something wrong in 2012 when he played the role of wizard in the London Palladium edition of The Wizard of Oz.
She said: In one scene he would be placed in a balloon and ascend to the gods. He must have stayed there for a while.
He remembers sitting in a hot air balloon, looking at his hands and seeing the showers. He remembers thinking it was strange, but he never thought it was related to Parkinson’s disease.
Jody said Dez thought he had it years ago (Photo: Dave M. Bennett/Getty Images).
O’Connor revealed his illness only to close family members, including his wife, their 16-year-old son Adam and four adult daughters, Karin, TJ, Samantha and Christina, from previous relationships.
added Mr. Wilson: She wanted people to be excited to talk to him and not think about his illness. It was a very progressive thing.
When we told him, he was very happy. He answered that question by saying: Yeah, I get it, but I keep taking the pills and smiling. He did: He took the pills and kept smiling.
Wilson died of hospital sepsis in his sleep a few hours after spending time with his youngest daughter, Christina.
Doctors called Wilson to the hospital when O’Connor’s condition worsened. Wilson was at home in Buckinghamshire, waiting for Covid’s test results for her son Adam, after the virus broke out at her drama school.
The star had a brilliant 45-year career (Photo: ITV/REX).
Unfortunately, O’Connor was already dead by the time she got to the hospital.
According to the rules of Covid-19, only 30 people were allowed to attend Mr. O’Connor’s funeral, but Mr. Wilson said it was an intimate service filled with love and respect.
With a 45-year career in showbiz, O’Connor is one of the most popular artists in the UK. His shows include The Des O’Connor Show, Tonight Des O’Connor, Take Your Choice and Countdown.
Read more: From O’Connor
In addition to television, O’Connor has had a successful musical career. He recorded 36 albums, five of which reached the British Top 40.
He also scored four Top 10 singles, including I Pretend, which became number 1 in 1968, and worked with stars such as Frank Sinatra, Adam Faith, Liberace, The Beatles, Shirley Bassey, Barbra Streisand, Buddy Holly and Cilla Black.
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