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Friend of the first Briton to die of AIDS speaks about the impact of Princess Diana

A friend of the first Briton to die of AIDS, whose name was finally revealed after 40 years in a new documentary, has said that Princess Diana shaking hands with a gay man who died of the disease was a ‘memorable moment’ that left him left in tears.

Ken Dee appeared on Good Morning Britain today to speak about his friend John Eaddie, who has been named as the UK’s first AIDS victim following an investigation by ITV’s Tonight programme, which airs tonight.

Speaking about the stigma surrounding the illness at the time of Mr Eaddie’s death on October 29, 1981, GMB co-host Susanna Reid asked Mr Dee how this was affected by Princess Diana’s hands-shaking. with a gay man who died of AIDS in 1987.

He replied, “I think that was a memorable moment when that happened because I think a lot of people realized then that it couldn’t be transferred just by touching.

“I think it went so much further for the gay community than anything was possible when that happened. I remember seeing it and crying at the time, and thinking this was great.”

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Ken Dee (pictured) appeared on Good Morning Britain today to speak about his friend John Eaddie, who has been named as Britain's first AIDS victim following an investigation by ITV's Tonight programme, which will air tonight

Ken Dee (pictured) appeared on Good Morning Britain today to speak about his friend John Eaddie, who has been named as Britain’s first AIDS victim following an investigation by ITV’s Tonight programme, which will air tonight

Speaking about the stigma surrounding the illness at the time of Mr Eaddie's death on October 29, 1981, GMB co-host Susanna Reid asked Mr Dee how it was influenced by Princess Diana (pictured left) shaking the hand of a homosexual man who died of AIDS in 1987

Speaking about the stigma surrounding the illness at the time of Mr Eaddie's death on October 29, 1981, GMB co-host Susanna Reid asked Mr Dee how it was influenced by Princess Diana (pictured left) shaking the hand of a homosexual man who died of AIDS in 1987

Speaking about the stigma surrounding the illness at the time of Mr Eaddie’s death on October 29, 1981, GMB co-host Susanna Reid asked Mr Dee how it was influenced by Princess Diana (pictured left) shaking the hand of a homosexual man who died of AIDS in 1987

UK's first man to die of AIDS has been revealed as John Eaddie after 40 years

UK's first man to die of AIDS has been revealed as John Eaddie after 40 years

Emotional family and friends finally pay tribute to 'Patient Zero'

Emotional family and friends finally pay tribute to 'Patient Zero'

UK’s first man to die of AIDS has been revealed as John Eaddie after 40 years as emotional family and friends finally pay tribute to ‘Patient Zero’

Princess Diana was famously the first member of the royal family to touch someone with AIDS.

In April 1987, the Princess of Wales opened the UK’s first purpose-built HIV/AIDS unit at London Middlesex Hospital to care exclusively for patients infected with the virus.

She was photographed shaking hands with an unidentified man who was suffering from the disease without wearing gloves, publicly challenging the idea that HIV/AIDS is transmitted from person to person through touch.

Mr Dee was on Good Morning Britain today to talk about his friend Mr Eaddie, who ran a boarding house in Bournemouth in the 1970s and died on 29 October 1981 at the Royal Brompton Hospital in Chelsea.

His cause of death was recorded as pneumocystis pneumonia – which would later be recognized as a deadly sign of HIV/AIDS.

The only trace of his death was a brief entry in the medical journal The Lancet in December 1981, describing a “known homosexual” who had traveled to Miami and was believed to have died of the same mysterious illness that afflicted much of the world. the gay community in the US.

Mr Dee (pictured left) replied: 'I think that was a memorable moment when that happened because I think a lot of people realized then that it couldn't be transferred just by touching'

Mr Dee (pictured left) replied: 'I think that was a memorable moment when that happened because I think a lot of people realized then that it couldn't be transferred just by touching'

Mr Dee (pictured left) replied: ‘I think that was a memorable moment when that happened because I think a lot of people realized then that it couldn’t be transferred just by touching’

Princess Diana (pictured right) was famously the first member of the royal family to touch someone with AIDS

Princess Diana (pictured right) was famously the first member of the royal family to touch someone with AIDS

Princess Diana (pictured right) was famously the first member of the royal family to touch someone with AIDS

An investigation by ITV’s Tonight program has now named Mr Eaddie as the UK’s first AIDS victim. By locating his family and friends and retrieving his medical records, his story can be properly told for the first time and his loved ones can finally honor him.

This morning Mr. Dee said, “We heard he was ill… he was out of breath… but we assumed it was a cold. It all went pretty quickly.’

“He was a charming host, he would remember you and remember your name,” he added of Mr Eaddie.

He told Tonight, “We’ve been through such a terrible time in our lives. But what John did was set up a place that was really safe. And that’s something we’ll always remember.’

Mr Dee was on Good Morning Britain today to talk about his friend Mr Eaddie, who ran a boarding house in Bournemouth in the 1970s and died on 29 October 1981 at the Royal Brompton Hospital in Chelsea.  In the photo, Susanna Reid

Mr Dee was on Good Morning Britain today to talk about his friend Mr Eaddie, who ran a boarding house in Bournemouth in the 1970s and died on 29 October 1981 at the Royal Brompton Hospital in Chelsea.  In the photo, Susanna Reid

Mr Dee was on Good Morning Britain today to talk about his friend Mr Eaddie, who ran a boarding house in Bournemouth in the 1970s and died on 29 October 1981 at the Royal Brompton Hospital in Chelsea. In the photo, Susanna Reid

By the time Mr. Eaddie was diagnosed, his life expectancy would have been only months or even weeks.

Shortly after his death, Professor Jonathan Weber began a study of 400 gay men in London who showed early symptoms of AIDS. He told Tonight that 399 of them have died.

“We had nothing against the underlying disease. And indeed, we still didn’t know what the disease was,” he said.

“Until 1984, we had no idea what it was. The power of this virus to kill people without intervention is quite exceptional.’

The first AIDS patient to be publicly identified in the UK was Terrence Higgins, who died in 1982.

The ITV Tonight program ‘Searching for Patient Zero: Britain’s AIDS Tragedy’ will be broadcast on ITV on Thursday 11 November at 7.30pm.

How Diana’s Handshake With AIDS Patient Changed the Worldview of the Disease

In April 1987, Princess Diana shook hands with a gay man who died of AIDS.

The People’s Princess touched the unnamed man without wearing gloves, challenging the previously believed notion that the disease could be transmitted through skin-to-skin contact.

She was quoted as saying, “HIV doesn’t make people dangerous to know.

“You can shake hands and give them a hug. Heaven knows they need it.”

At the time, Princess Diana opened the UK’s first ward exclusively for HIV/AIDS patients at London Middlesex Hospital.

Princess Diana was famously the first member of the royal family to touch someone with AIDS.

It is unclear if this photo is the first time she has made physical contact with an HIV-infected patient.

The People’s Princess would also visit the Lighthouse regularly, both with and without media.

According to Dr. Rosemary Gillespie, chief executive of the HIV charity Terrence Higgins Trust, said: “London Lighthouse provided residential and day care facilities for men, women and children living with HIV and AIDS, and provided refuge and respite for those marginalized and abandoned because of their diagnosis’.

Princess Diana was a patron of the National AIDS Trust at the time of her death in 1997.

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