This Comes After Breaking Down During COVID-19 Fatalities Broadcast
Sky News presenter Kimberley Leonard took to Twitter on Saturday to thank members of the public for their kind words of support after she broke down in tears during a broadcast about COVID-19 casualties.
She tweeted after the report: “Thank you. Your message from around the world have shown me that although we may not physically be together, we are experiencing this as one.
“If you have lost loved ones, we are with you. If you are fighting this virus, we are with you. We must all keep fighting. KL x”.
Ms. Leonard was unable to hide her emotions during the live broadcast where she was required to read out the names of the latest coronavirus victims on air.
Viewers noticed her voice visibly begin to fade as she started to talk about the personal stories of those who had recently died from COVID-19.
Thank you all for your lovely messages – having a strong cup of tea and catching my breath x— Kimberley Leonard (@KimberleyeLeo) April 25, 2020
She said: “Pharmacist Pooja Sharma died a day after her father, both passing away from COVID-19. Paying tribute to her friend, her loved ones said her love was contagious and that she gave her friends nothing but love, support, and a tummy ache with all the laughter.”
It was at this point that the presenter had to ask viewers to excuse her as she gathered herself together.
Immediately after the live broadcast, Ms. Leonard was inundated with messages of support, with many saying how well she handled the situation.
One said: “I’ve never seen a more moving news report. My heart sank and like many watching, I’m sure, tears welled up in my eyes. I know this section of the program is here to remind us numbers are not just numbers but have a human side. You certainly did that Kimberley. Thanks. Keep well.”
Another said: “As much as I don’t want to see you upset, I thought it was amazing and touching that you did. It demonstrates your empathy and you are a credit to your profession.”
Ms. Leonard even took the time to personally respond to the majority of the messages she received, thanking them for their kind words, and reminding them to stay safe during this difficult time.
One viewer shared her own loss from coronavirus, saying: “My dad died last week too, Kimberley. Devastating times but we must pull together.”
The presenter replied straight away, saying: “I’m so sorry to hear this. My Dad died in 2006 and I sat with him in ICU for about ten days. My heart goes out to you and your family xx.”
However, there was one negative tweet among the many supportive ones, with one displeased viewer saying: “What does “we are with you” even mean? – it is a cop out, it is a phrase used to extract one from needing to actually “be with” anyone. It is a sympathetic non-pat on the shoulders of those who actually need a hug but won’t get one. Please don’t patronise.”
Ms. Leonard refused to be drawn into an argument, tweeting in response: “Thanks . . . if that’s how you feel, pls don’t reply to me. K.”