Coronavirus: ‘Who’s next Daddy, you or me?’ Family ‘decimated’ by COVID-19 as mum and nan die

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Chris Cadby’s wife died with COVID-19 days after her mother’s death – and he faced the agony of telling his seven-year-old son.

Chris Cadby was hit by a double tragedy after his wife Julianne died with coronavirus just four days after her mother Joan’s death which was linked to the disease.

He had to tell his seven-year-old son Evan, who then asked him the heartbreaking question: “Who’s next Daddy? Is it going to be you or is it going to be me?”

After suffering from coronavirus himself, Mr Cadby tells Sky News how he has coped with the loss of Evan’s mother and grandmother and why he has a warning for people flouting lockdown rules.

Coronavirus has decimated our family – and we didn’t do anything wrong.

My mother-in-law Joan died on Easter Saturday. She was 84 and was living with us after spending time on a COVID-19 ward following an operation.


                              Coronavirus: 'Who's next Daddy, you or me?' Family 'decimated' by COVID-19 as mum and nan die

Her condition had deteriorated over the Easter weekend. She became more and more incoherent and even stopped taking her tablets.

I went to check on her at about 7.30pm and she was gone. It was devastating.

I went upstairs to tell my wife Julianne who was suffering with symptoms of the virus so was self-isolating in our bedroom.

I opened up the bedroom door and said: “Ju, your mother’s gone.” I couldn’t go in and hug her. I just had to leave her on her own. There was nothing else I could do.

Just four days later, Julianne’s condition worsened.


                              Coronavirus: 'Who's next Daddy, you or me?' Family 'decimated' by COVID-19 as mum and nan die

It was just before midnight and she had asked me to run her a bath. When I went back in to see her, she said: “I think I need to go to hospital.”

As soon as she said that I grabbed my phone and dialled 999. But by the time I pressed enter and turned to her, she had slumped back on the bed.

I knew she was gone.

I tried my best and gave CPR before the paramedics arrived but it wasn’t enough.


                              Coronavirus: 'Who's next Daddy, you or me?' Family 'decimated' by COVID-19 as mum and nan die

I had to find the strength to tell our son Evan what had happened. It was heartbreaking as I had only just told him a few days earlier his nanny had died.

He hadn’t seen his mum for a week because she had been suffering with the virus.

He came downstairs and I said: “Evan, mummy’s gone to be with nanny. She’s gone with nanny, mate.”

He gave me a hug and had a little cry and I had a little cry.

That afternoon he said to me: “Who’s next Daddy? Is it going to be you or is it going to be me?”

I said: “I hope it’s none of us. We don’t want anymore do we?”, and he said: “No.”


                              Coronavirus: 'Who's next Daddy, you or me?' Family 'decimated' by COVID-19 as mum and nan die

He’s only seven. He understands that his mummy is not coming back but I don’t think he’s taken it in really.

It’s been made more difficult because Evan has had to go and stay with my brother-in-law because I’ve been in hospital with coronavirus.

Evan also tested positive for the virus but he hasn’t shown any symptoms and is fine.

I can’t wait to give him a big hug.

We’re having a joint funeral for Julianne and her mum but only 10 people can go.

It’s not going to be what they deserve but unfortunately we all understand and we’ve got to abide by the rules.

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Other mums and dads at Evan’s school have raised money for the family. It will all go to Evan for when he’s older. He’s not going to have a mum when he’s 18 so the money is his.

It’s amazing what they have done. I can’t thank people enough. But all the money in the world won’t bring Julianne and Joan back.

For anyone not sticking to the lockdown rules, I’ve got one message: Just please stay in.

It’s not just for you, it’s for everyone. Just stay in the house. Life is too short.

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