Despite saying their goodbyes several times, Ali Sakallioglu's family never lost hope and insisted doctors not pull the plug on their grandfather.
A British taxi driver of Turkish origin has survived a 222 day-long battle with Covid-19, becoming Britain’s longest-suffering patient to have beat the virus.
In what international media is calling a "holiday miracle," the grandad-of-nine, Ali Sakallioglu, returned home from a London hospital on Christmas Day.
Sakallioglu, 56, was hospitalised for over seven months and suffered from a heart attack, a stroke, collapsed lungs, liver and kidney failure in addition to sepsis and other infections, according to Hurriyet Daily News.
Sakallioglu battled the virus for 186 days in hospital and 36 in a nursing home, according to Hurriyet.
"On three different occasions, they phoned my daughter and told her to get everyone down because I wasn’t going to make it," Sakallioglu told Mirror Online.
Despite saying their goodbyes several times, Sakallioglu's family never lost hope and insisted doctors not pull the plug on their grandfather.
Sakallioglu began developing Covid-19 symptoms, such as fever and loss of taste and smell, at the end of March.
He was at an increased risk of severe illness from the virus due to his type-1 diabetes.
When his condition worsened at home, Sakallioglu was rushed to a nearby hospital and placed on a ventilator and a few days later placed in an induced coma for three months.
"Hope was all we had and we knew he wasn’t giving up. It’s incredible to have him here for Christmas," Sakallioglu's son Jay, told the Mirror Online.
"It’s the best present we could have asked for,” he added.
According to Birmingham Live, Sakallioglu is spending Christmas his girlfriend Sheena O’Shay, 52 in Catford, South London.