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Losing my parents was tough, says only child Marty Whelan


Marty Whelan with daughter Jessica and wife Maria

Marty Whelan with daughter Jessica and wife Maria

Marty Whelan with daughter Jessica and wife Maria

He's known for his bubbly on-screen persona, but presenter Marty Whelan has opened up about how he struggled to cope with losing his parents.

The Winning Streak host (59) said it was more difficult for him than others when his parents passed away because he is an only child. The broadcaster's father died in 1998 followed by his mother in 2013 and Marty admitted he wished he had siblings to turn to in difficult times.

"Being an only child I think you're affected by it even more than if there was bunches of us, because we were so close," Marty explained.

"When you walk down behind a coffin - there's no one else who has lost that parent on that day. You're totally alone on that day. [My wife] Maria and my children are a great unit, but when you're on your own it's a totally different way of operating. You just row in, you're the carer."


He is currently writing his own memoir, something the game show host never dreamed he would ever do.

"[Publishers] Gill and Macmillan twisted my arm, I never thought of doing it before," he told the Brendan O'Connor Show.

"It's strangely enlightening and odd, I don't know how I'm feeling about it, but I'm thoroughly enjoying it.

"It's fun to do and it hits you from time to time because you think about things. You think about your parents, about your family, about happy days and sad days," the RTE veteran added.