‘Love you old boy’ - TV star Simon Thomas pays tribute after death of his father
Norfolk-born TV presenter Simon Thomas has paid tribute to his father, after his death at the age of 78.
The Sky Sports presenter tweeted that his father Andrew had died on Friday, May 29.
He wrote: “God Bless you dad. You touched so many lives, but most of all mine and my precious family’s. I couldn’t have asked for a better dad. Love you old boy.”
Former Blue Peter presenter Mr Thomas was born in Cromer, where his father was a curate. The family later moved to Grimston, where the elder Mr Thomas was a vicar. They later moved to Surrey and then back to Norfolk.
In April, Mr Thomas had written a social media post about how difficult it had been not being able to return to Norfolk to see his father while he was ill in a care home during coronavirus restrictions.
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He said staff at the home had been helping Rev Thomas to FaceTime with his grandson Ethan.
He said: “For lots of people this is a really tough time. It’s especially hard for those in care homes. Visits from family and friends are often all that residents have to look forward to each day.
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“Now they face an indefinite period where those visits can’t happen. Wish I was able to drive up to Norfolk and give my Dad a wave through the window.
“But for now, FaceTime, phone calls and a few cards from Ethan will to do. Thoughts with everybody with loved ones in care homes and of course in hospitals who they’re unable to see right now.”
Following his father’s death, Mr Thomas wrote on Instagram: “Perhaps the words of Ethan earlier this week sum it up best when I asked him how he was feeling about Grandpa being ill, he said this: “I feel sad but Grandpa’s got lots to be proud of. Producing three beautiful children (definitely right on Becky and Hannah), got to marry and spend his whole life with lovely Grandma and spent his life serving God.”
In 2017, Mr Thomas’s wife Gemma died just a few days after being diagnosed with acute myeloid leukaemia - a type of blood cancer.