Fit, healthy 42-year-old father who refused vaccine dies of Covid ‘wishing he had listened’

Sister urges vaccine hesitant to reconsider after warning brother ‘thought he would be ok’ if he caught virus

Celine Wadhera
Wednesday 04 August 2021 19:15 BST
<p>John Eyers was a fit and healthy man who enjoyed bodybuilding and mountain climbing, his family said</p>

John Eyers was a fit and healthy man who enjoyed bodybuilding and mountain climbing, his family said

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The twin sister of a fitness enthusiast in his forties who died of Covid after refusing to get vaccinated is encouraging those hesitant about getting the jab to reconsider.

John Eyers, a construction expert and bodybuilding competitor from Southport, Merseyside, died of Covid-19 and organ failure after being hospitalised, “pumped full of every drug in the hospital”, and ventilated, his sister Jenny McCann said.

Ms McCann, of Pinner, northwest London, shared her brother’s story and a plea for people to get vaccinated on social media. She said: “My 42-year-old twin brother died in ITU of Covid-19 last week. He died exactly four weeks after testing positive. He was the fittest, healthiest person I know. He was climbing Welsh mountains and wild camping four weeks before his death.”

She added that his only pre-existing condition “was the belief in his own immortality”.

“He thought if he contracted Covid-19 he would be OK. He thought he would have a mild illness. He didn’t want to put a vaccine on his body.”

Ms McCann said that she had recently argued with her brother about the Covid vaccine.

“His body was pumped full of every drug in the hospital. They threw everything at him. But eventually the bedfellow of Covid-19, infection and organ failure, claimed his life.”

She continued: “Before he was ventilated he told his consultant that he wished he had been vaccinated. That he wished he had listened”.

“His death is a tragedy. It simply shouldn’t have happened. There is no comfort in it.”

Along with Ms McCann, Mr Eyers is survived parents, nieces and nephews, and a 19-year-old daughter.

“My two children have lost their fun uncle. The uncle who would always play with them. The uncle that dressed up as Father Christmas on Christmas Day. My Mum has lost her baby boy. My niece, her much-loved and much-needed Dad,” Ms McCann said.

She added: “My mum wants people to know about John. For his story to save someone’s life. For our pain and loss to drive people to get a vaccine.”

Ms McCann’s Twitter thread has been retweeted nearly 22,000 times and her Facebook post has been shared some 9,500 times.

In replies to her original post on Facebook, alongside heartfelt condolences, people were sharing the ways that Mr Eyers’s story had altered their behaviour.

Penny Arque wrote: “I felt the same as John about the vaccine but I want you to know that your words and this awful tragedy changed my heart. I went and got vaccinated 2 days ago.”

Another Facebook user, Jenny West said: “I booked (my vaccine) the day I saw the news about John passing, being in Australia it does not seem real for us. In Perth Covid has not touched us, but this tragic, tragic loss made it very real and has shocked me to my core.”

The twins’ mother Linda also responded to Ms McCann’s Facebook post urging people to get vaccinated.

She said: “Please, please, please get the jab. Do NOT believe the non-believers. We are living proof of what this awful disease (does) to really fit people, most people are not fit like our beloved son … Please get the jab DO NOT let his life be in vain”.

The news of Mr Eyers’s death comes as more than 11 per cent of adults across the UK remain unvaccinated, despite jabs being available to all over-18s for weeks.

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