A young and healthy firefighter was left in intensive care after being badly struck down by the killer coronavirus.

Dad-of-four Steve Landon first contracted cold-like symptoms, before later struggling to breathe and collapsing twice.

The 39-year-old, of Wrexham, North Wales, was rushed to hospital where – after improving on one day – he was rushed into intensive care the next.

One of his lungs had collapsed and he was administered oxygen before spending 10 days in the critical care unit at Wrexham Maelor Hospital.

He is now set to remain in hospital and has returned to the wards to begin his recovery, but is still “weak” and “can’t walk or stand up”.

Steve’s wife, Becky, 39, said the virus was like a “roller coaster” that would make her husband feel better one day and then significantly worse the next.

After appearing to improve on one day, the next day his condition plummeted

The children’s nurse told North Wales Live : “(At first) Steve and I started having cold-like symptoms so we both went into self-isolation.

"He started off feeling fatigued and achey but had no temperature at that point.

"I had similar symptoms but didn't develop a cough or a temperature, but as I got better, Steve got worse and worse.

"By March 26, Steve developed a cough which started to get troublesome so I rang the GP for advice.

"Being a nurse, I did his observations and reported that he had a temperature and was told to keep an eye on him.

"But the next day, Steve was so weak, he couldn't move off the sofa."

After after making improvements at hospital, his condition spiralled again

Becky said by March 28, Steve was extremely pale, his cough had worsened and he collapsed, so she called the GP again and was told to call for an ambulance.

She added: "Steve's oxygen levels were really low and his temperature was high so they decided to take him to hospital.

"That was the worst bit, not being able to go with him.

"Steve wanted to walk to the ambulance himself, but his legs wouldn't carry him and he collapsed in the lounge so they had to bring a chair to him.

"I was trying to shield the children because it was quite traumatic for them seeing crews in their masks and protective clothing giving oxygen to their dad.

"My daughter told me all she can remember is her dad in the chair, it was horrible."

Steve's family were left terrified as his lung collapsed and he ended up in intensive care

Steve was assessed at the accident and emergency department before being moved to the critical care unit.

He spent one night there after "perking up" and was moved to a ward, but 12 hours later, his condition deteriorated and he returned to critical care where he spent 10 days.

He was put on a CPAP (pressurised oxygen) machine and thankfully didn't need a ventilator but had to have a chest drain put in when one of his lungs collapsed.

On Monday (April 7), he was finally able to go back on to the ward again.

Becky said: "Steve is doing better but we think he will be in hospital for a while.

"He is still weak and can't walk or stand up. He will have to learn to walk again, it's so weird.

Steve is now back on the ward after 10 days in intensive care but has a long road to recovery

"Before this happened, he was very fit and healthy and would train a lot.

"We are a very active family, we've done Tough Mudder and other challenges and we are always rock climbing or mountain climbing.

"I think it shocked him how much this has wiped him out.

"It has shocked us all and hit home to a lot of people that this virus can happen to anyone."

Although Becky hasn't been tested, she believes that she has had coronavirus along with two of their children.

She added: "When I first posted about Steve on Facebook, I didn't do it to worry anyone, I did it to make people aware and urge them to stay at home.

Steve's wife Becky said the firefighter will now have to learn to walk again

"Just a few weeks ago, I admit even we thought that we'd be fine but the reality is you just don't know.

"Steve seemed to have one thing after another and has been so up and down - one day he was feeling better and the next he would crash back down again, it's like a roller coaster.

"He's been in hospital for 11 days now and ill for two weeks.

"But he is keeping in good spirits and has nothing but praise for the hospital staff who have been amazing - he knows he wouldn't be here without them."

Becky said the family have been keeping in touch with video calls and messages now that Steve is on the road to recovery.

But she described her heartbreak when she received one of the first videos he tried to send, telling his children how much he loves them.

He couldn't breathe and Becky decided the video was too distressing to show 14-year-old Caleb, 13-year-old Evie, 11-year-old Abigail and seven-year-old Seth.

She recalled: "He couldn't breathe long enough to string a sentence together, he was gasping for breath, it was awful. I couldn't show the kids that.

"When we speak to him now, there's definitely an improvement, even though he still needs oxygen.

"He's got a long journey to recovery but he'll get there, he's a fighter."

Becky said that "superhero" Steve has agreed to trial a new drug which could help other Covid-19 patients in future.