Nurses at a hospital in the US have held handwritten notes up to a window to inform a family that their father had died from coronavirus.
Nurses at a hospital in the US have held handwritten notes up to a window to inform a family that their father had died from coronavirus.

Touching way family notified of dad’s death

Nurses at a hospital in America have held handwritten notes up to a window to inform a family that their father had died from coronavirus.

Rene Johnson's five children were not allowed inside the Catholic Medical Centre in Manchester, New Hampshire, where he was being treated in the intensive care unit after contracting the disease.

The family had kept vigil in a park next to the hospital where they were able to see the window of their father's room.

"Every day, we would just try to do a little something different," Mr Johnson's daughter Angela Daneault told CNN.

"Yesterday morning, me and my brother went and had breakfast in the park to try and feel close to our dad."

Nurses at a hospital in New Hampshire used handwritten notes held up to a window to inform the family about their father’s death from COVID-19. Picture: CNN
Nurses at a hospital in New Hampshire used handwritten notes held up to a window to inform the family about their father’s death from COVID-19. Picture: CNN

When Mr Johnson died, the nurses who'd taken care of him held up two handwritten signs to the window to inform his children, reading "he is at peace" and "we are so sorry".

"We told him, as we tell all our patients, how much they are loved, that we are here for them," one of Mr Johnson's nurses, Kaitlyn Kerrigan said.

"We hold their hands and tell them - everything they tell us to tell them. We tell our patients."

Another nurse who works at the hospital, Lynn Harkins, said Mr Johnson's children's vigil in the park had become "famous" for brightening the spirits of exhausted staff.

"They were kind of famous with our staff. Everyone would come in for their shift and say, 'Is the family out there?' And everyone would go to the window and wave."

The family said they wanted to continue to boost the morale of the nurses who took care of their dying father. Picture: CNN
The family said they wanted to continue to boost the morale of the nurses who took care of their dying father. Picture: CNN

The family now want to thank those nurses who made sure their father wasn't alone in his last days, and intend to keep coming to the park with signs and balloons for the nurses.

"I just really want this to be about the nurses," Mr Johnson's son, Kevin, said.

"They just went beyond.

"There's people in there that really need somebody. I'm going to make signs. We're going to give them food. They're going to see balloons."

Originally published as Touching way family notified of dad's death

Kevin Johnson’s family, outside the hospital to thank the nurses who took care of their father. Picture: CNN
Kevin Johnson’s family, outside the hospital to thank the nurses who took care of their father. Picture: CNN


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