Coronavirus: Stafford Hospital nurse 'wanted to stay on front line with colleagues'

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Patrick McManus and family
Image caption,
Patrick McManus, pictured with his sons - (l-r) Adrian, Kevin and Stephen - made his family very proud, they said

A nurse who died after contracting coronavirus refused the chance to leave the front line as he wanted to stay with his "family" of colleagues, his son has said.

Patrick McManus, 60, worked at Stafford's County Hospital before his death in the early hours of Sunday.

Colleagues have described him as kind, compassionate, well-liked and said they will miss his "big, Irish personality".

His son Kevin said the family has been overwhelmed with messages of support.

"He was very funny, extremely hard working and proud to work for the NHS," he said.

"He had very strong morals [and] always stuck up for those who needed someone, he was very proud to be a trade union rep."

Image source, Family handout
Image caption,
Patrick McManus had been with his partner Lena Vincent for over 10 years and he was living with her in Stoke-on-Trent

Mr McManus Jr believes his father, who had been a nurse for 40 years, was offered the chance to move off the front line "but insisted he wasn't going to leave his family [of colleagues]".

He said his father, originally from Strabane in Northern Ireland, was a very proud Irish man and many of his family had been inspired by him to work in the healthcare sector.

His mother was a nurse specialist in London, his brother a midwife in London and he said he had worked in an operating theatre in his early 20s.

His relatives, including his father, had not experienced any difficulties in accessing protective clothing as far as he knew, he added.

The responses the family has received on social media after Mr McManus's death made them feel "extremely proud".

Image caption,
Mr McManus (l), pictured with his three sons, had spent 40 years in nursing

"It has been overwhelming the response to our Facebook post on Sunday," he said.

"It makes the whole family extremely proud. It shows what he meant to a lot of people."

Paying tribute to him on Monday, University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust said he was a popular and valued member of staff and thanked him for his "many years of invaluable service".

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