Fans have rallied behind Monty Python star Michael Palin after the 79-year-old announced the tragic passing of his “dearest wife”, Helen.
Palin took to his website to announce the news of his wife’s death which came mere weeks after the loving couple celebrated their 57th wedding anniversary.
“My dearest wife Helen died peacefully in the early hours of Tuesday morning. She had been suffering with chronic pain for several years, which was compounded a few years ago by a diagnosis of kidney failure,” he said.
“We first met on a summer holiday on the Suffolk coast when we were both sixteen and we married in our early twenties. Two and a half weeks ago we celebrated our 57th wedding anniversary.
“Her death is an indescribable loss for myself, our three children and four grandchildren.
“Helen was the bedrock of my life. Her quietly wise judgment informed all my decisions and her humour and practical good sense was at the heart of our life together.
“The family ask that their privacy be respected at this time.”
Palin’s fans were quick to offer their condolences and messages of support with one reflecting on what a “warm and lovely person” Helen was.
“This is so terribly sad. Like lots of your fans, I feel I’ve got to know your family through your diaries. Condolences to you all,” one person shared.
“My condolences Michael. She was lovely, I always remember her seeing you off on your first major docu-series adventure, ‘Around the World in 80 days’.”
“So sorry to hear about your loss. Don’t be afraid to shed a tear as you remember the good times you shared,” another commented.
“I’m so sorry to hear of your loss. Im reading your diaries at the moment and Helen comes across as such a warm and lovely person. My thoughts are with your family.”
Palin had previously opened up about his wife’s poor health during an interview with The Telegraph in 2002, telling the publication that she had entered respite care and was experiencing constant pain.
“I don’t think you can cure it, but they will help her manage it,” he told the publication.
“She was so active and still is mentally.
“But the body is declining.
“We live life with our fingers crossed.”
The couple married in 1966 after meeting on holiday in Suffolk in 1959. The couple have three children, Thomas (born 1969), William (born 1971), and Rachel (born 1975), and four grandchildren.
Palin rose to prominence in the 1960s as a member of the comedy group Monty Python, which produced some of the most iconic and groundbreaking comedy shows and films of all time. In addition to his work with Monty Python, Palin has had a successful solo career as a writer and presenter of travel documentaries, including Around the World in 80 Days, Pole to Pole, Full Circle, and Himalaya.
Palin is also a successful author, having written several books, including novels, travelogues, and children’s books.