A man aged in his late 50s has died after testing positive for Covid-19, health officials have confirmed.
Nick Matthews, 59, had underlying health conditions and died in the Bristol Royal Infirmary on Saturday.
His wife Mary said she had lost her “soul mate” and “my best friend”.
The family of the retired police officer, from Nailsea in North Somerset, is “currently in isolation” and Mrs Matthews urged friends not to visit “until we get the all clear”.
‘Spread of infection’
“Charlotte, Ben and I are beyond proud to have had such a big character in our lives,” she said on Facebook.
University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust said: “Sadly, we can confirm that a man who was being cared for at the Bristol Royal Infirmary, and had tested positive for Covid-19, has died.
“The patient who died was in his late fifties and had underlying health conditions.
“The family has been informed and our thoughts are with them at this difficult time. We will not be commenting further and ask that everybody respects the family’s privacy.”
In his last Facebook post, Mr Matthews described how he was celebrating his birthday in Fuerteventura in the Canary Islands.
Former colleagues of the retired Avon and Somerset officer have also paid tribute on Facebook.
One said: “Nick was a true legend at Broadbury Road, so very well liked not only by his colleagues but by those he dealt with on the streets. He was a very well respected member of the constabulary.”
Another said: “Nick was a true A&S legend, took his job incredibly seriously and not seriously at all, all at the same time.
“I have nothing but fond memories and utmost respect for this top copper and true gentleman.”
The police force said: “Our thoughts and condolences are with his friends and family at this difficult time.”