YORK soprano star Rebecca Newman today paid a loving tribute to her husband Jay Fewtrell - and describes how she fought to try to save his life after he became unwell at home.

Jay died suddenly on Tuesday evening aged 38 despite efforts by Rebecca and paramedics to revive him.

The couple, who were married for ten years, have a young son, Logan, who is almost three years old.

Rebecca today described Jay as a "whirlwind", a "bear of a man" and their "protector" and told how they called themselves the "home team" who would "face things together".

Click here to read her loving tribute.

York Press: Rebecca and Jay at the York PromsRebecca and Jay at the York Proms

They set up the York Proms in 2017, which ran in Museum Gardens. Rebecca, known as the 'People's Soprano', has toured with Russell Watson, sung with Alfie Boe and has had a number-one classical album.

She said that Jay suffered from Irritable Bowel Syndrome-style attacks and chest pains for several years and was having an episode on Tuesday evening shortly before he died.

She said: "We don’t have answers yet about why he died, but I must stress to everyone that he didn’t suffer.

"All I know is he was having another IBS-style attack and I was helping him through it with a hot water bottle and painkillers after he had had a quick soak in the bath.

"He did say he may need to go to hospital but wasn’t wanting to move from lying on the landing floor, cooling off from his bath.

"I was massaging his feet to help comfort him, which he said was helpful, and Logan was playing around him, saying how was going to ring the doctor, like in the nursery rhyme about the monkeys jumping on the bed.

"I thought he was stretching to ease the pressure on his back but his breathing changed and I realised something was wrong.

"I thought he might be having a seizure. I told him not to worry and just relax. I called the ambulance and explained the situation. They talked me through CPR, which I did learn in girl guides when I was 11, but had never used on a real person.

York Press: Jay Fewtrell with Rebecca, Logan and Samson the family dogJay Fewtrell with Rebecca, Logan and Samson the family dog

"It was tiring and I needed all my strength to make sure I was pushing his chest down enough. The paramedic arrived after seven minutes and I assisted with getting items out of the bag, attaching the oxygen and then continuing chest compressions while the paramedic attached the nodes to his chest and checked for output.

"The trainee, Amy, was now looking after my son downstairs, who had been really good when I was doing CPR and made no fuss. I think he knew it was serious.

"When another doctor came, I left them to look after him, but when they didn’t get an output anytime soon I knew it wasn’t going to be good news.

"Jay always thought he wouldn’t make it to old bones, but I don’t think he ever expected this.

"I take a great deal of comfort from the fact he was with us, he didn’t suffer and wasn’t scared. I gave him a kiss goodbye when Rowley & Sons came to take him away and told him not to worry, we would be ok and he could rest easy."

Jay was born in Birmingham, grew up with a younger brother, Ben, mum, Lisa, and dad, Christopher, who died when Jay was 17.

He moved to York in 2009 to take up a role in York Hospital. After four years working with Rebecca on her music, and founding the York Proms with her in 2017, he begun retraining to be a gas engineer, and set up his own business, which was to be called Viking Gas.

He was a keen motorcyclist and went on two European motorcycle tours with friends.

Rebecca said she was happy they had had a lovely last weekend together.

"I am happy that some things happened in the past few weeks that tie up some loose ends, that we had a really lovely weekend with friends and that he was feeling good about life and the future. I know if he could say one thing to me now it would be 'you’ve got this, babe'."

Click here to read more tributes to Jay Fewtrell in our special obituary.