Kerri-Anne Kennerley and her husband John have been through a hellish few months. The former Middays and Mornings host has been by her beloved’s bedside since his tragic fall in March that rendered him catastrophically injured with spinal cord damage.
However,she was given his blessing for a leave pass to fly to US for the opportunity to interview Australian singer and one of KAK’s karaoke favourites, Rick Springfield.
While she’s always been a trooper who kept the show going, taking flight as a guest reporter for Seven’s Sunday Night now comes with some “guilt”.
With John in need of around-the-clock nursing, in Sydney’s Prince of Wales Hospital, Kerri-Anne entrusted the roster of daily visits, meal planning and DVD duties to his niece Zara, while she got her own well-earned respite of sorts — on overseas assignment.
The interview with the Jessie’s Girl hit maker explores Springfield’s own rollercoaster ride of life — from his eyebrow-raising relationship with a then 15-year-old actress, Linda Blair; his battle with depression; and the grief he still clearly suffers after saying goodbye to his Zoot bandmate, Darryl Cotton (who died of liver cancer in 2012).
“We saw him in New Orleans in concert. He was sick as a dog, talk about the show must go on…he had lost his voice by the end, but it didn’t stop everybody else singing all the songs for him while he was surfing the mosh pit, with all these baby boomers,” she said.
Leaving last week for London and Europe on two future stories, the 62-year-old had to make peace with her “new norm.”
“Not every day is a great day and there are times when you go ‘what the…what’s happened here?’ But at the end of the day, we’re all averages. I got breast cancer … but I handled that much better than John has this. This has been soul-destroying with John because I was lucky in a sense to get it early…and got better. This with John is never going to get any better. It will always be this way. At the same time, you’ve just got to just get on with it.”
In the midst of all her troubles, she’s still looking forward to the end of the year, when John is supposed to come home from the hospital.