Speaking to The Mirror, Owen and his mum Polly opened up about her lifelong health struggles after being diagnosed with a congenital heart condition as an infant. At 34, Polly was admitted to hospital with heart failure.
“When I was just 34 years old with my hands full with three young boys, I developed a cough and became very breathless,” she recalled.
“Eventually, my symptoms became so intense that I was finally diagnosed with heart failure. Fortunately, the medications started working, and I began improving.”
Polly was later fitted with an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) after being diagnosed with ventricular tachycardia. However, her symptoms have since worsened, meaning she’ll need a heart transplant in the future.
“Nothing makes you step back and look at things more than somebody in your family having problems with their health,” Owen said of his mum’s heart condition.
He continued: “Our mum means so much to us, she’s the heart of the family, so the news we’ve had over this past year has been really hard to hear. Mum has helped us all through so much and been so strong for us all, now it’s our turn to do the same for her.”
To further boost awareness about their mum’s condition, Owen’s brother Louie will run a marathon to help raise funds for the British Heart Foundation.
Meanwhile, Owen, who currently stars as Romeo Nightingale on the Channel 4 soap, has discussed the reality of filming tense Hollyoaks scenes with his real-life girlfriend Jemma Donovan.
Speaking to Inside Soap about the storyline, which has seen Romeo fall victim to coercive control by Rayne (played by Donovan), the actor explained it was easy for the couple to separate themselves from their characters.
From Monday, September 25, Hollyoaks will stream first online via Channel 4 each weekday. Episodes then air on E4 the following day, before getting their YouTube premiere a week after that.
Selected omnibus episodes are available via Prime Video.
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