Granddad, 96, returns home to applause after beating coronavirus

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A great-granddad was applauded by neighbours and family members as he returned home after a month long battle with coronavirus.

James Smith, 96, from Fazakerley, received a round of applause from his neighbours and some members of his family as he was returned home by paramedics on Monday.

The grandad of 10 and great-granddad of 15, served in the merchant Navy during the Second World War and was able to leave hospital just days after the 75th anniversary of VE Day.

James Smith, 96, from Fazakerley was welcomed home by his neighbours after spending four weeks in Aintree Hospital with Covid-19

He was admitted to Aintree Hospital in early April suffering from a kidney infection but he tested positive for Covid-19 when staff tested him for the virus upon entering hospital.

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The grandad, who is described as normally healthy, spent four weeks on the coronavirus ward at Aintree Hospital where he also battled multiple kidney infections at the same time.

James Smith, 96, pictured with family celebrating a previous birthday.

Granddaughter Georgina Smith, 23, from Anfield, said she was delighted to have her granddad back at home safe and well after weeks of worry.

She told the ECHO : "It was hard especially for me because he is the only grandparent I have left. I'm very close to him.

"I think it was quite hard for him to grasp exactly what was going on and the severity of the coronavirus situation and we have to keep explaining it all to him.

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"My cousin sent me the video which showed him arriving back and being wheeled out from the ambulance when all the neighbours came out.

"He was loving all the attention and was waving. He was just really happy to see everyone even if he didn't quite know what had happened and what's going on at the moment."

James Smith, 96, from Fazakerley was welcomed home by his neighbours after spending four weeks in Aintree Hospital with Covid-19. Pictured here with a great-grandchild

Georgina also paid tribute to the work of nurses and other staff at Aintree Hospital who helped her granddad recover from the virus.

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As the family weren't allowed to visit him in hospital, staff enabled James to speak to his family on video calls which helped to boost morale.

She also spoke to her granddad over the phone and said that since being discharged from hospital he is in good spirits and is telling jokes again.

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She added: "We're extremely thankful to all the staff at Aintree for everything, especially the nurses who helped us facetime him.

"It was a really nice gesture that helped us all get through this difficult time.

"I spoke to him on the phone and he was back to cracking jokes and asking me about the kids and asking when I could see him next."

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