The Count Arthur Strong star revealed 48-year-old Karina – who had underlying health problems – had tested positive for COVID-19 last week and died at the weekend, after the family had said goodbye over a video call.
Kinnear wrote in The Guardian: “I played Karina one of her favourite songs and told her how proud I was to have been her brother and what gratitude I felt for what she had taught me about life.
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“We had wanted to be with her together as a family and, under lockdown conditions it was as good as we could have hoped.”
The 44-year-old actor, who plays Bill Tanner in the James Bond movies, revealed Karina had severe brain damage caused by a lack of oxygen at birth and was paralysed from the waist down.
But he said: “It was coronavirus that killed her. It wasn’t her ‘underlying conditions’. Prior to her diagnosis, she hadn’t been in hospital for 18 months – an unusually care-free period for Karina.
My sister died of coronavirus. She needed care, but her life was not disposable | Rory Kinnear https://t.co/h7nuAXlLXj— The Guardian (@guardian) May 12, 2020
“No, it was a virulent, aggressive and still only partially understood virus that was responsible, a virus that is causing thousands of people, despite the unstinting bravery of the medical staff of this country, to say a distanced goodbye to relatives who would still be alive had they not contracted it.”
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Paying tribute to his sister, he said: “Karina was ebullient, brave and wry, with a passion for noise, laughter, family and chaos. And those that engaged with her, knew her, loved her, were rewarded beyond their imagination by her friendship and trust.”
Kinnear said he hoped once the battle against coronavirus had been won, that people might, “transfer our common sense of purpose... financially and emotionally and with a similar level of heroism and selflessness – in the lives of those who will continue to need it most.”