'My worst' | 

Six O’Clock Show host Karen Koster describes shock death of mum as ‘completely brutal’

“Sometimes I'll have a really busy day and I'll suddenly get a fright and think, 'Oh God, she's not here', and it's like a sucker punch.”

Karen Koster and her late mum Brenda (Pic credit: Photocall Ireland)

Maeve McTaggartSunday World

The Six O’Clock Show presenter Karen Koster has opened up about the “completely brutal” grief she felt after her mum’s shock passing.

Her mum Brenda passed away last summer, and the TV star has been candid about the “sucker punch” that comes with remembering her loss.

"One day I can say it in a sentence to someone like it's a rational thing that has happened, and another day it just hits me out of the blue,” she told The Sunday Times in a candid interview.

"Or sometimes I'll have a really busy day and I'll suddenly get a fright and think, 'Oh God, she's not here', and it's like a sucker punch.

"It's like a fearfulness creeps in. It just knocks me."

The Six O’Clock show host admitted her grief is still very raw.

"We didn't know it was coming, so the shock has been completely brutal."

Karen returned to work on the programme before going on leave for ten-weeks, her now co-host Greg O’Shea had been filling in for Martin Sheen.

"At the time, I just thought I can't pretend to be here and just have a laugh,” she said.

"I felt I had to acknowledge it. Greg was coincidently the presenter on that day, and he was so sweet and kind and supportive.

"I thought, well, he's seen me at my worst: at my most shaky and my most tearful. It's nice that he's here working with me now."

The Love Island winner said he felt “so sorry” for Karen on the day she was tasked with interviewing Marty Morrisey.

His own mum had tragically passed away a few months prior, and the beloved sports commentator shared some advice with Karen live on air.

"What can you do?” she asked. “You get through it and you put one foot in front of the other and it's a strange time.

“I just wanted to say that I'm not great tonight, I'm a bit shaky and that's why,” Karen added.


Marty said: “I didn't know this had happened but she's with you all the time, there's no doubt about it.

“It's a tough journey, there's no point in denying it. My mother was in an accident and I miss her dearly. When I go home that's my biggest problem, there's a void and pain there.

“But you’ve got to keep going. It's like a rollercoaster, you're up and down. The loneliness is tough at times but you think of her and what she'd want you to do.

“And she'd want you to get on with the show and be Karen.”

The RTÉ star lost his 94-year-old mum Peggy in a tragic car crash in December of 2021.

A red weather warning had been in place on the night she died, with Marty planning on staying with his mum.

"The one thing that scared my mother was a storm. Our house is on the Wild Atlantic Way on top of a hill with no protection," he told the Late Late Show.

"When the winds and the storms come in, and the roof is a bit high, it rattles.

"So every time there was a storm, mam moved.

"We agreed we'd meet in Inagh which is 10-15 minutes from home and she wasn't there," he continued.

"She was driving on a road that she drove three or four times a day and she missed a bend and unfortunately, we lost her.

"I kept driving and came upon the accident and it was tough... I told her I loved her," he said.

"The fire brigade were there, the ambulance, the Gardai and I do want to say this... they did their best to save my mum but I knew what my mother wanted because she was deep faith, much more so than me now.

"I asked the fire brigade, the ambulance, and the Gardaí would they say a prayer with me.

"Once we had mum taken out of the car, we all stood around and we said a prayer together."

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