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Video Of Intubated COVID Patient Playing Violin As Thank You To ICU Staff Goes Viral

A man who is intubated as he battles COVID-19 played his violin from his ICU bed to thank the staff and spread some happiness. This viral video of Grover Wilhelmsen shows the tenacity of the human spirit, even when fighting for your life.

Grover Wilhelmsen is a retired orchestra teacher. He is unable to speak because of the intubation, but he still wanted to thank his caregivers in a special way. He wrote his request on a piece of paper.

Grover Wilhelmsen Diagnosed With COVID-19 In Early October

“Toward the middle of my shift he wrote, ‘You know, I really want to play here at the hospital. What do you think about my wife bringing in my violin and viola?,'” his nurse. Ciara Sase [1] said.

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He and his wife Diana both contracted COVID-19 in early October, but she was able to recover at home. The virus significantly affected Grover’s lungs and landed him in intensive care.

This took approval by doctors at McKay-Dee Hospital in Ogden, Utah. But, the wheels were set in the motion and the 70 year old musician was brought his instruments.

Nurse Sase stayed in his room as Grovedr played church hymns and “Tennessee Waltz.”

Given the toll of the pandemic, it’s important to find victories. These nurses and doctors witness and care of the sickest of the sick. 

Seeing and hearing Wilhelmsen perform was inspiration and encouraging to these healthcare warriors.

“It brought tears to my eyes. For all the staff to see a patient doing this while intubated was unbelievable,” the nurse said. “Even though he was so sick, he was still able to push through. You could see how much it meant to him. Playing kind of helped to soothe his nerves and brought him back to the moment.”

Intubated COVID-19 Patients Plays Violin For ICU Staff

This was very much appreciated by staff. Staff gathered outside the windows of his room at a safe distance to watch and listen.

“I’m used to patients being miserable or sedated while being intubated, but Grover made an unfortunate situation into something positive,” nurse Matt Harper said.

“This was by far one of my favorite memories in the ICU that I’ve had. It was a small light in the darkness of COVID.”

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Nurse Harper was there to witness Grover Wilhelmsen first pick up the violin. He said “It felt like I was in a dream.”

Make sure you have some tissues on hand as you watch this brave COVID patient serenade staff from his ICU bed in the now viral video below.

Grover Wilhelmsen spent a month in the hospital before being transferred to a long-term acute care facility last week.

Currently, his healthcare team is working on weaning him off the respirator.