A WIFE who was able to be with her husband for his final moments has praised carers for their work under ‘absolutely strenuous conditions’.

Sally Powell, 73, hadn’t seen her husband of 30 years, Jim, in seven weeks when staff at Caledonia Care Home in Saltcoats invited her to be by his side as he passed away having contracted coronavirus.

Jim, 74, had been a resident at the facility for four years and Sally said she couldn’t praise the workers highly enough.

She told the Herald: “I don’t know how they get up in the morning knowing what they have to face.

“It’s so difficult for the staff with these residents who have been in their care for years.

“To tell someone, like Jim, to stop walking down the corridors, to stay in their room and not see their family.

“It must be so hard.”

Jim, a Geordie, had Alzheimer’s and Sally believes he would have been comforted by the familiarity of his carers.

Having had no contact due to lockdown restrictions, Sally knew where Jim was by looking at his window from outside the care home.

On April 21, he was diagnosed with coronavirus, and when Sally was invited to the home last Wednesday to be with him one final time she had to dress in full protective gear.

She said: “If he had gone into hospital, I wouldn’t have had the same comfort.

“It’s got to be recognised, it was exceptional.”

Jim’s step-daughters were with their mother as they said goodbye, but now they are all having to isolate apart due to the risk they may have the virus.

Unable to hold each other as they grieve for their loss, they are faced with arranging a funeral only a small number will be allowed to attend.

Sally said: “There are decisions I never though I’d have to make. It’s pretty rough.

“I am now on my own, my family can’t visit, I can’t get out.”

There will be a service for Jim on May 15, which will be streamed virtually.

Sally and Jim’s two stepdaughters have set-up a fundraiser with the money going to Alzheimer Scotland in his memory.

You can donate by clicking here.

If you would like to pay tribute to somone you have lost, then you can here.