A HEARTFELT plea to abide by the lockdown rules has gone out from a Redditch woman whose family has been left devastated by Covid-19.
Becki Hipkins’ dad Terry Barton unknowingly caught the infection while in Worcestershire Royal Hospital for cancer treatment in September.
After returning to his Church Hill home a few days later, he started to show symptoms of coronavirus.
By that time he had passed it on to his wife of 54 years, Cath, and two of their six daughters, including Becki.
Becki in turn passed Covid on to her partner, Tony.
As they deteriorated, Cath, aged 72 and Terry, 75, were sent to different hospitals, Cath to the Alex, Terry to the Royal.
But while he started to recover, Cath could not, and tragically passed away on November 11.
“So after 54 years of marriage my dad had to say goodbye to my mum on a video call whilst she was unconscious,” said Becki.
The tragedy came to light after Becki spotted a story in the Redditch Standard calling for volunteers to speak out in a series of videos, organised by Redditch Borough Council, about the dangers of Covid.
Speaking this week, Becki said: “People say they want to be with their families at Christmas, and they will make their own minds up about who they mix with.
“All I would say is that you want to know your family is there all year round, not just at Christmas.
“You break the rules and spread Covid among your family and they may not be around next time.”
Becki made a quick recovery from Covid, despite being an asthma sufferer. Tony was not so lucky, and spent weeks struggling to breath and unable to sit up.
Terry is still in hospital, and still on oxygen, and Becki admits the loss of her mum will really hit her when her dad goes back to the empty family home.
“Some people are taking ridiculous risks, and Covid is no respecter of health, fitness or age,” she said.
“For goodness sake, please take care and follow the rules.”
To see Becki’s heartbreaking video, visit: https://www.facebook.com/RedditchBC/videos/133275988245378