Rugby league star Luis Johnson hails ‘true survivor’ dad after Covid-19 recovery

Warrington star Luis ­Johnson admits he’s in awe of his dad’s amazing coronavirus recovery.

The forward, 21, has spent the past seven weeks dreading every phone call in case it was bad news.

Dad Errol, a former Leeds and Bradford Northern player, was so ill he was put into a coma for three weeks.

At one point he was given only a 20 per cent chance of surviving and spent almost two months on a ventilator in Leeds’ St James’ Hospital.

But on Sunday, Errol, 51, was given a ­standing ovation by nurses, doctors and hospital staff as he was wheeled out of intensive care and onto a normal ward.

Johnson said: “He really is the strongest person I know, a fighter and the true definition of a Covid-19 survivor.

"It has been so hard, especially not being allowed to go into hospital to see him. It is such a massive relief.

“I’ve spoken to him and he can’t remember much but he’s so happy that he’s the longest person to be in intensive care at the hospital and survive.”

Nurses provided Luis and his family with video of the moving moment when Errol was saluted as he was moved into a normal ward.

Sister Kiana, who lives with her dad, said: “They told us to expect the worst at one point, so it has been an awful time.

“I would do anything for my dad but the hardest thing has not being able to see him or see the rest of my family for support during ­lockdown.

“The doctors have told him they didn’t expect to see him get this far so it’s amazing he isn’t on a ­ventilator or in need of oxygen any more.”

Errol, who played for Leeds and Bradford in the late 1980s and early 90s, had no ­underlying health ­issues before falling ill in March.

Kiana said: “Originally he thought he had food poisoning but then he got a bit of a fever, there was loss of appetite and breathing problems so I phoned for an ambulance on March 28 and he’s been in ever since.

“It depends on his strength and recovery when he can come home but the nurses say he is very ­determined to get well.”

Johnson, who is recovering after surgery on a torn hamstring, added: “We want to thank the hospital staff so much.

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