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Joe Swash has opened up about the death of his father. The EastEnders actor was just 11 when his dad died after suffering from undiagnosed heart condition, Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome (SADS).
I’m 39 in January, and that scares the life outta me
The 38-year-old has spoken candidly in the past about what happened when he was a young child.
But the father-of-three has now said his birthday on Janaury 20 is a frightening one for him.
In a few months time, Joe will be the same age as his dad when he died suddenly.
The Mickey Miller star said he is “gutted” for his late parent and is “scared” about being the same age.
He commented: “I’m 39 in January, and that scares the life outta me, to think that, you know, he was so young…
“I’m gutted for him that he never got to bring us up properly.”
Joe continued: “He never got to see his grandkids, so I feel so sorry for him. But on the other hand, I’m determined that I’m gonna do it differently.
“I’m gonna try and be here as long as possible and see my grandkids, and see all my boys grow up into being beautiful young men.”
The small screen favourite is dad to Harry, 13, with ex Emma Sophocleous, and one-year-old Rex with partner Stacey Solomon, 31.
He also lives with her two sons from previous relationships: Zachary, 12, and eight-year-old Leighton.
Joe went on to discuss his relationship with his own father and the impact his death has has on him.
Speaking on Dave Berry’s Dadpod, he said he “loved him to bits” and being without him was of course “difficult”.
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He recalled: “I had to go through stages of my life without a father figure.
“… I had to become a man without having a man to, kind of, look upon, to get advice from.”
Describing his dad as his “best pal”, Joe said they did “everything” together and he was the same with his two sisters.
The Dancing On Ice champion recalled: “When my dad died, he had so many friends – he was a London taxi driver – that the police had to close the roads ’cause there were so many cars going to the funeral…
“They all come up to me and said, ‘Your dad was one in a million.'”
Joe added: “I try to live up to what he done for me in them 11 years, with my boys and with Stacey’s boys as well.
“They’re my kids as well. I love them to pieces. And I’m very lucky because, hopefully, touch wood, in 30, 20 years’ time, I’ll have these five amazing young men who idolise me and that I’ll have forever to be my pals.”
A new episode of Dave Berry’s Dadpod is available to download every Thursday from Apple Podcasts, Spotify, the Absolute Radio app, absoluteradio.co.uk, and all mainstream podcast providers.
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