Kathryn Thomas has opened up about how her friendship with the late Gerry Ryan almost caused her to turn down her presenting role on Operation Transformation.
The mother of one has been heading up the RTE show since the sudden death of the former radio star back in 2010, and says she found it to be a difficult decision to take over the show that Gerry had made famous.
“Gerry had been doing the show for three years and I got a phone call from Mary Curtis, a brilliant woman who was very good to me throughout my career in RTE. She phoned me and asked me if I’d be interested in doing it,” Kathryn told Karl Henry on the Real Health Podcast.
“Straight away I said no. I said ‘That is not for me, that’s Gerry’s show, how can I take this on, how can I do it?”
“I felt like I was stepping into Gerry Ryan’s shoes and nobody can step into Gerry Ryan’s shoes.”
“I met the production team and I was and still am friends with Mick Ryan, Gerry’s brother, so I rang Mick and said ‘What do you think?’”
“This was less than a year after Gerry’s passing so it was all very soon and sudden. He said ‘Absolutely, this is the show for you, it’s a great gig, you’re perfect for it and you’re great with people.’”
“I said I’m going to it differently because I can’t do it the same. He said it to Morah (Gerry’s ex-wife). Once I had their backing, it made the decision easy for me,” she added.