Denise Welch – who of course currently stars on Loose Women, and was formerly a Coronation Street cast member – has revealed to the Daily Mirror today the moment she thought her actor husband Tim Healy was going to die.
Tim – who shot to fame in hit sitcom Auf Weidersehn Pet and presently stars in ITV comedy Benidorm – was rushed to hospital earlier this year after suffering agonizing chest pains.
It was later revealed that he suffers from the disease, intermittent claudication, which sees the major arteries become “clogged”.
Of learning of Tim’s illness, Denise said, “I was terrified Tim could die. I tried to stay strong for him, but I was scared.”
She added, “I’m not religious but I think things happen for a reason and this has made us both stop, think and re-evaluate everything.
“I didn’t need reminding how much I love Tim, but something like this makes you value what you’ve got. It has made a big difference to our relationship…
“And it’s made me grow up – and about bloody time!”
Denise went on to explain that Tim’s illness first became a problem during his filming for Benidorm last year, and apparently, he became so ill, he gave thought to quitting the show.
Denise said, “When Tim was filming the first series of Benidorm he started having real problems walking.
“After going just 50 yards he would be in agony with the pain in his legs.
“But being a typical man, he’d feel a bit better and say ‘I’m fine, I don’t need to go to the doctor’.
However, after he suffered increasing bouts of agony, Tim went to hospital, where doctors told him he must quit smoking and eat more healthily if he wants to survive the disease.
He also underwent surgery to unblock the arteries in his legs, which, fortunately, was successful.
Of that, Denise said, “They opened him up from above the hip to just above the knee on each leg and put stents into the arteries.
“Even on the day of the operation, despite the pain of the surgery, he said he knew it had worked. I was so relieved.
“Tim was always going to be a grumpy sod, but the way the op transformed him was just amazing.
“After a few weeks convalescing at home, he was then well enough to fly back out to Benidorm in September to start filming the new series.
“I think he felt like he’d got a whole new lease of life.
“If they hadn’t found it so soon he could have lost his legs or even died. And it shook him up.”
And finally, of the couple’s new healthier lifestyle since Tim’s dramatic op, Denise said, “We’re feeling healthier and happier. I can already tell this is going to be great for our love life.
“Let’s just say I’m looking forward to putting all his renewed energy into practice!”
Here’s a clip of both Denise and Tim in Benidorm…