Kerri-Anne Kennerley’s beloved husband John has died at the age of 78 after a tragic fall in 2016 left him wheelchair bound.
The veteran TV host announced the devastating news on her Instagram page on Thursday.
The 65-year-old Studio 10 star was by John’s side when he passed away at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney on Wednesday night.
It’s with a heavy heart and awful sadness that I let you know that my beautiful husband passed away’: Kerri-Anne Kennerley’s husband John died aged 78 after a tragic fall left him wheelchair bound
‘It’s with a heavy heart and awful sadness that I let you know that my beautiful husband John passed away last night,’ Kerri-Anne wrote, alongside a photograph of the pair on their wedding day in 1984.
‘As you all know, John has faced some tremendous challenges over the past few years and with each he has been extraordinarily brave and determined to overcome those hurdles and live a normal life.
She went on: ‘I want to thank everyone at St Vincent’s Hospital for the beautiful care they have provided to John in his last days.
‘John passed away peacefully with his son Simon and me by his side. John, you were the love of my life. Xxx’
Tragic: The 65-year-old Studio 10 star was by John’s side when he passed away at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Sydney. Pictured at a gala in June 2018
Entertainment editor Richard Wilkins led the tributes to Kerri-Anne and John as he sent ‘all the love and support’ from Nine.
‘Such, such sad news. John, just absolutely doted on Kerrie-Anne. She was just so wonderful with him through those tough times,’ he said on-air.
‘They loved going out together and even in the wheelchair she’d take him to opening nights and premiers and things. She will be absolutely devastated and Kerri, to you and your beautiful family, all the love and support from your family here at Channel 9.’
Meanwhile, Bachelorette Georgia Love wrote underneath Kerri-Anne’s Instagram post: ‘Oh gosh I am so so terribly sorry Kerri-Anne xxx.’
Bachelorette star Sophie Monk added: ‘Sending all my love, Kak. I’m so sorry.’ She added a love heart to her message.
Sydney PR Queen Roxy Jacenko wrote: ‘KAK I am thinking of you during this terribly sad time. Sending so much love.’
Always by his side: John was left paralysed after he fell over on the lawn outside a golf resort in March 2016. The couple are pictured at the Logies in April 2017
Australian model Tegan Martin penned: ‘Thinking of you, Kak. He was a beautiful man.’
John was left paralysed after he falling from a balcony while taking photos of Kerri-Anne during a golfing tournament in Coffs Harbour, New South Wales, in March 2016.
He was airlifted to hospital with spinal chord injuries. Doctors operated on his neck after it emerged he had fractured his C3 and C4 vertebrae.
He was put in an induced coma, spent six weeks in intensive care and had multiple operations. Doctors diagnosed as an incomplete quadriplegic.
They initially warned that John may never again move or speak, but with Kerri-Anne by his side, he managed both.
In a rare Sunday Night interview in 2017, John said: ‘[Kerri-Anne] is very loving and she has been the strength of my whole recovery.’
‘Without her I don’t think I would have attempted it but, as I say, she was there when I woke up and she has been with me every day,’ John explained.
Accident: He was airlifted to hospital with spinal chord injuries after breaking the C3 and C4 vertebrae in his neck and diagnosed as an incomplete quadriplegic. Pictured in April 2017
‘It is really, really been hard… I have appreciated it, she never faltered. Never faltered.’
Kerri-Anne immediately took on the role of carer for her husband, and gave an update on his condition in June last year.
‘He needs care 24/7, he still can’t push a button and can’t feed himself, but the rest of his health is good,’ she told New Idea.
At the time she said her husband’s injury required a huge lifestyle adjustment for the pair, but they still did their best to do a lot of what they’ve always enjoyed.
‘We still like to have a good time, we like to chat, we read the newspaper – we discuss events… we just can’t go out like we used to,’ she said.
Devoted: Kerri-Anne immediately took on the role of carer for her husband, revealing he needs 24/7 care and can’t feed himself but has ‘good health’. Pictured in 2013 before the fall
She described her husband as remarkable, and spoke enthusiastically about his motivation and progress with rehabilitation.
She said that amidst all the tragedy and hardship, she had never forgotten how lucky the pair are and they appreciated what they’ve been given and the support they have.
‘We need to just get on with it. Life is for living, appreciate it,’ Kerri-Ann added at the time.
Kerri-Anne modified their home after the fall, installing purpose-built ramps to make life easier for John upon his return in November – nine months after the fall.
She celebrated the milestone with a party with friends at their Woollahra home, writing on Instagram: ‘John’s home. This is the day I’ve been hoping and waiting for since March 6th. Thank you to each and everyone on of you. Forever thankful.’
Despite John’s condition, the couple continued to make frequent red-carpet appearances over the years, with Kerri-Anne posing proudly by her husband.
The couple tied the knot at the Sydney Opera House in 1984 and were married for an incredible 35 years.
Kerri-Anne recently opened up about them suffering a miscarriage 30 years ago, an experience that was ‘deeply painful’.
‘(The miscarriage) was deeply painful at the time, but I only delve into and consider things that are possible,’ she told Stellar last summer.
The TV maven added: ‘It’s ridiculous to consider what-ifs. I’d be a basket case if I did that.’
In her autobiography A Bold Life, she revealed she believed she was carrying a son when she suffered that miscarriage, in 1988.
‘It’s a terrible experience to have your baby die inside of you,’ she wrote.
The TV host revealed that John also went through the loss with her and that the experience deeply affected them both.
‘What John and I went through is deeply personal,’ she wrote in her book.