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Arizona nurse dies of COVID-19 on Christmas Eve

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Posted at 10:20 PM, Jan 14, 2022

Arizona nurse Alan Bennett is one of the 25,000 Arizonans who have lost their lives due to COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic.

"My daughter and I, and his daughter, were holding his hand when he passed... and I just told him that I loved him and that it was okay to go," explains Angela Claudio, with tears in her eyes.

The pain of losing her husband is still so fresh, still so raw.

Bennett died from complications of COVID-19 on Christmas Eve.

"He was a great guy," explains Angela. "He always looked out for everyone. Even if you weren't a relative, he would help you out if he could."

That's what Angela says made her husband such a stand-out nurse; working not just one, but two jobs, fighting on the frontlines of the pandemic before coming down with the virus himself in early December.

"By Saturday, he was dizzy and he passed out on me."

Desperate for help, Alan was rushed to the ER where he was placed on a breathing machine -- the virus would end up impacting his heart, causing him to develop atrial fibrillation. At first, there were signs of hope, but they would be short-lived.

"A week later, it wasn't working anymore and they had to intubate him and when they intubated him, it wasn't working. They couldn't keep him going and about a week later, he passed."

Angela is no stranger to loss.

In 2004, her first husband died from a rare disorder that caused his aortic valve to rupture. Years later, both of her sons would meet the same fate.

Enduring immense loss in her life, Angela says she still looks for ways to help others -- just like Alan did, even though nothing can bring him back.

"I miss his hugs, his kisses, his smile."

This story was originally reported by Nick Ciletti on