Rita Wilson marks a year since she and Tom Hanks fell ill with COVID-19


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Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson announced they were battling COVID-19 on March 11, 2020. (Photo: Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson announced they were battling COVID-19 on March 11, 2020. (Photo: Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

For many Americans, March 11 — the day Tom Hanks announced that he and wife Rita Wilson had tested positive for COVID-19, while the NBA suspended its season — marked a new chapter of the coronavirus pandemic; that elite athletes and movie stars could be susceptible underlined the seriousness of the virus’s spread. Now, as the one-year anniversary approaches this week, Wilson is reflecting on her illness.

On Sunday, Wilson shared a photo from March 7, 2020, which shows her dressed up for a performance at the Sydney Opera House; the singer and actress was in Australia while Hanks filmed Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis Presley bio-pic, Elvis. But the glamour would be short-lived; as Wilson, 64, writes, she began to feel “very tired and achy” the next day, and was eventually hospitalized. She and Hanks — who also fell ill — shared their diagnosis days later. 

Following a period of self-isolation in Australia, where production on Hanks’s film came to a halt, the married actors recovered. The couple donated plasma after learning that they carried COVID-19 antibodies, though Wilson has since shared that she no longer has those antibodies

In her Instagram post marking a year since becoming sick, the Sleepless in Seattle and Now and Then star expressed gratitude, sorrow and hope.

“I want to take a moment to say how grateful we are for our health, how thankful we are for the medical care we got in Queensland, and that we share in the sorrow of each person who lost a loved one to this virus,” Wilson wrote. “I’m hopeful for so many being able to get the vaccine.”

The singer-songwriter, who has released four albums, added that “music has been very healing this year” thanks to Zoom sessions and “safe recording and writing.” 

Hanks, who hosted Saturday Night Live at Home and participated in Joe Biden’s Inauguration Day special since recovering, has called out those who flout COVID-19 guidance. 

“Look, there’s no law against ignorance. It’s not illegal to have opinions that are wrong,” the 64-year-old said during an appearance on Today last July. “But there is a darkness on the edge of town here folks, and… let’s not confuse the fact: It’s killing people… I don’t know how common sense has somehow been put in question.”

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