Paul makes major death decision after heartbreaking loss in Coronation Street
The happiest of days turned into the worst of days for Paul Foreman (Peter Ash) in Monday (September 18)’s Coronation Street.
The happy occasion was his and Billy (Daniel Brocklebank)’s stag do, which under the careful hands of Gemma (Dolly-Rose Campbell) was an avalanche of rainbows and glitter – all the things that Billy had feared. In fact Summer (Harriet Bibby) had popped over earlier to try to get Gemma to tone things down, but after a few shots even Summer was happily proclaiming that ‘At the end of the day, who doesn’t love a rainbow?’
Paul absolutely loved it, and so did Billy. After initial reservations the archdeacon was soon getting stuck into drinking games and everyone was having a brilliant time.
There were some notable people missing, though. Paul couldn’t help wondering when his friend Shelly (Natalie Amber) would turn up, and Bernie (Jane Hazlegrove) was also absent.
Bernie was at the police station, having been taken in for questioning about the scam she’d been running with Shelly where Shelly was ordering laptops with an old work credit card and Bernie was selling them on via a friend at the market.
While she was at the station, Bernie got some bad news, and was soon heading for the stag do knowing that she was about to ruin Paul’s day.
The news was that Shelly had died the previous day. Paul was absolutely devastated. Since his MND diagnosis Shelly – who also had MND – had been the one person Paul could confide in with total honesty. She listened to his worries, offered him advice and helped him to laugh through times that would have been bleak without her.
Visiting her flat with Billy because he needed to feel close to her one last time, Paul decided he wanted to organise Shelly’s funeral. She had no family apart from a brother she wasn’t close to, and Paul felt that he knew what her final wishes were.
The whole experience also led Paul to reflect on his own wishes and what would happen when he got to the end of his life. He’d been saddened to hear that Shelly had been alone when she died, and he didn’t have the chance to say a final goodbye to her.
He told Todd (Gareth Pierce) later that he wants to take control of how and when he dies. Todd was shocked, thinking that Paul had put the idea of assisted dying out of his mind after considering it previously. He said it wasn’t the only option. ‘There’s other medical support to help you live.’
Paul was determined. ‘This is what I want,’ he said. ‘No doubt in my mind.’
He told Todd to promise not to tell anyone, but Todd said that Billy and his family had a right to know. Paul wasn’t convinced.
‘Promise,’ he insisted, leaving Paul with a huge decision to make – and a huge burden to carry if he decides to keep Paul’s secret.
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