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A Valley doctor who helps kids breathe is fighting for his life against COVID-19

Dr. Kelvin Panesar has worked with hundreds of patients in the Valley for more than a decade. Now he's fighting for his own life.

PHOENIX — A Valley doctor who has saved hundreds of children from respiratory issues is fighting for his life tonight with COVID-like symptoms.

In a Facebook post, his wife said he has tested positive for coronavirus. 

For more than a decade, Dr. Kelvin Panesar has been in the Valley helping children and families with pulmonary problems breathe a little easier. He and his wife opened up their own practice Crazy About Kids Pulmonary Services in Gilbert. 

More than a half dozen patients told 12 News Panesar is not only a great doctor but a great person. 

“There are great doctors out there and then there are exceptional people out there like Dr. Panesar. He’s one of a kind,“ Christina Nguyen said. 

The talent of Dr. Kelvin Panesar is to make almost all of his patients feel special, they added.

“He always made you feel like he was your favorite patient,” Tammy Brady said. "It means the world."

Brady said she followed Dr. Panesar from practice to practice because of his bedside manner and ability to help her daughter.

“Every single day he would come in and talk to us.“ Lacey Ockey said. 

Her daughter was born premature, less than two pounds but said Dr. Panesar would be there to keep her family up to date as her daughter has battled health issues. 

The personal connection between doctor, patient and family is special between all these parents but especially Janalyn Watkins, and her nonverbal daughter Cicily. She said the doctor would talk to her daughter when many other professionals would only engage with Janalyn.

“He would always make sure to talk to my daughter, ask her the questions.” Janalyn Watkins said.

All these families were saddened by the news posted by Dr. Panesar's wife Wednesday, informing friends and family that Kelvin was in the ICU fighting for his life with COVID-19. 

“Just a really weird twist of fate that a man who helped so many children breathe is struggling to breathe,” Janalyn Watkins said.

The news got over 800 comments full of well-wishers and supporters for Dr. Panesar, with the families of his former patients leaving messages of support for him and his family. 

“We love him and we support him and we are praying for him,” Christina Nguyen said.

“We love you and we are fighting for you and we are praying for you. There are so many people that need your help,” Tammy Brady said.

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