Husband From One Of UK's First Married Couples With Down's Syndrome Dies Of Covid-19
Tommy Pilling, husband in one of the UK's first couples with Down's syndrome to get married, has sadly died from the coronavirus.
The 62-year-old from Shoeburyness, Essex was treated in three different hospitals since early December for a chest infection and suspected pneumonia, according to the Guardian.
During his care he contracted Covid-19. He lost his battle with the virus on New Year's Day.
A statement on Tommy and Maryanne's Facebook page confirmed the tragic turn of events.
Family have said his wife Maryanne is 'completely devastated' by Tommy's death, especially considering they haven't spent more than a few hours apart since they first met 30 years ago.
Tommy's mother-in-law, Linda Martin, wrote on social media: "Our darling man Tommy has left a vast hole in our lives that no one will ever fill. I considered him as my son although he was my son-in-law.
"I have never regretted a single moment of the 30 years he was in my life and care, be brought so much joy just by being him, I will always be thankful for the laughter and fun he brought to our lives.
"Fly high Tommy we will love you forever."
Maryanne's sister Lindi Newman added: "We are in shock and are heartbroken this has happened after I tried everything to keep him safe while he shielded for 10 long months.
More Like ThisMore Like This
"Thank you for showing me what unconditional love was, I will remember your beautiful ways forever, your pure heart, your love of music, Elvis, your dancing. Your positive attitude and how you appreciated the small things.
"Thank you for making Maryanne so happy and for being the best uncle my children could ever ask for.
"Thank you for being you and making the world a better place, touching the lives of millions just by being you.
"Marriage made you my brother in law, love made you my brother."
A few weeks after Tommy had been admitted to hospital, a post on their page said Maryanne was 'completely lost' without her husband.
"She is distraught and it isn't getting any easier but she is staying with our mum so is distracted and keeping busy but it is still not helping," the post said.
Tommy and Maryanne met at a training centre for people with learning disabilities in Essex way back in 1990.
They tied the knot in 1995 after dating for 18 months and renewed their vows on their 20th wedding anniversary.
Featured Image Credit: Caters
Chosen for YouChosen for You
Most Read StoriesMost Read