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Estrella Catalan, a Filipina nurse who died of C0VID-19 in UK


There was heartfelt cheering after a minute of silence, the hospital flag was flying from all over, flowers arrived and to celebrate the life and career of Filipino staff nurse Estrella Catalan, a hundred people gathered outside the emergency room of the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) in the UK.


According to the BBC, Estrella, 52 years old, died Friday with COVID-19 in the hospital she worked for more than 18 years. In September 2002, the Bohol native entered the organization and gained a reputation for being a hard-working, diligent and compassionate nurse, someone who put others' needs first.


The BBC notes that Sam Higginson, Chief Executive of the NNUH NHS (National Health Service) Foundation Trust, remembers Estrella as "a wonderful individual and a caring and conscientious nurse who loved teaching and mentoring students."


According to, she said she wanted to help “but I don’t know when.” Helpless and emotional and struggling to speak through tubes, Estrella added, "I don't mind working and doing even extra shifts to help the trust, but I'm here as a patient."


“She touched so many people's lives, she was always kind and supportive of colleagues and will be much, much missed,” Higginson told the gathering outside the hospital, according to the Eastern Daily Press.


The ceremony was characterized by the attendants as relaxed and polite. Several carried white roses, heeding the plea of the family. The poignant motion of lifting Estrella's ID badge up in the air was made by someone in the audience at one point.


According to the GoFundMe page set up by one of her friends, Estrella “fought with all her strength and will doing all she could to get back to her beloved husband Melvin and their sons John and Josh.” Her death follows that of her second son Vince two years ago.


She was supposed to have left a vow to her family that she would return with them, but after two weeks of treatment at the critical care department of the NNUH, she lost the fight with Covid. The GoFundMe page describes her as a loving, devoted and compassionate wife to Melvin, her husband, and the best mother to her son.


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