MOVING tributes have been paid to a much-loved family man who has died after contracting coronavirus.

Greenock grandad Gordon McNeil passed away on January 18, aged just 59.

Gordon began to feel unwell just a week earlier and thought he was coming down with a cold.

Just a week later, he passed away in his bed at home.

Gordon, who worked for Inverclyde Council for almost 40 years, was a well-known face in Greenock.

His loved ones have been left devastated by his death.

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Daughter Stacy, 36, says her dad was a 'proper family man' who worked hard all his life and never wanted a lot of fuss - right up until the end.

Stacy said: "It's so hard to take.

"He was only 59 and would have celebrated his 60th in June.

"On the day he died he asked us to 'wait until tomorrow' before phoning NHS24 - but tomorrow didn't come for him."

The family spent Christmas Day together and were very careful - but Gordon's wife Ann and his son-in-law Donald tested positive just a few days afterwards.

The whole family self-isolated at home for 10 days and everyone seemed to be doing well.

Gordon didn't start to feel ill until he was back at his work after self-isolation.

Stacy said: "He just said that he didn't feel good and that he thought it was a cold or the flu coming on.

"He came home from work that night and went straight to his bed.

"The next day he was totally floored.

"My brothers tested positive around that time so we all had to isolate again.

"Dad was too ill to get a test by that point.

"My mum recovered from it quite quickly so there was no cause for us to think that it would be any different for my dad.

"He didn't have any underlying health conditions, so just thought it would be a case of him being ill for a few days and shaking it off."

By the Thursday, Gordon was feeling a bit better and Stacy was surprised to see him up and about on a video call with her mum.

But he was back in his bed again by the weekend and wasn't eating or drinking much.

The family were keen to phone NHS24 but Gordon was adamant he didn't want to go to hospital and was sure the one-to-one care he was getting from Ann was helping him through.

On Monday January 18, the family called NHS24 for some advice and when the nurse asked for more information, Ann went upstairs to ask Gordon some questions.

She was devastated to find her husband wasn't breathing.

Ann and her sons gave Gordon CPR while waiting on an ambulance to try to bring him back but they knew they had lost him.

When paramedics arrived, they assessed that there was nothing more they could do.

Stacy said it's likely that her dad stopped breathing after he fell asleep and says she takes comfort in that.

She said: "It's nice to think that he just slipped away in his sleep but it's such a shock for everyone he has left behind, as we never got to say a proper goodbye."

During his life, Gordon helped to grow a wonderful family.

As well as wife Ann and children Stacy, Gordon and Gavin, Gordon leaves behind three granddaughters - Aylie, 12, Robyn, six, Halle, one.

Stacy says Gordon doted on his three granddaughters - and was looking forward to seeing her wee one, Halle, growing up.

Stacy added: "He was a son, a husband, a father, a brother and a father-in-law - but first and foremost he was a granda.

"He absolutely loved spending time with the girls.

"When we were isolating and I would do video calls with him, he was always wanting to see Halle and wondering what she was up to.

"He was a real family man."

Gordon was born to Mary Bain and Archibald Scott McNeil and grew up in Torrance Road near Leven Road.

He was a pupil at King's Glen Primary then went to Cowdenknowes all boys high school.

Gordon moved to London when he was 16 to stay with his mum and stepdad and trained to be a carpenter.

But the pull of Greenock was too strong and he returned to where his heart lay two years later.

He worked in the old Co-operative as a van boy and became a van driver when he passed his test.

And that's when he met his sweetheart Ann.

The couple married in the old Co-operative reception in 1982 and went on to have their three children.

Gordon started at Inverclyde Council in 1981 as an assistant gardener and also worked as a chargehand in grounds maintenance before taking on the role of Streetscene foreman.

The dedicated worker would have been celebrating 40 years at the council this year and was well known for his hard work in communities all over Inverclyde.

Stacy says her dad was never one for the limelight and instead worked hard behind the scenes to make sure big events across Inverclyde went without a hitch.

He worked away in the background for events like Gourock Highland Games and Armistice Day ceremonies - and also made sure that baby Jesus was delivered to the nativity scenes across Inverclyde in time for Christmas Day.

Stacy says Gordon earned a title at his work - and although it was funny, it didn't reflect his real personality.

She said: "He was always referred to as 'Mr Grumpy' but he always had a smile on his face.

"He loved it and took it all in his stride.

"He knew everyone and was always waving and saying hello to people.

"He was so funny, caring, hospitable and attentive to people."

As a big fan of the Tele, Gordon used to buy the paper every day and drop one off to his sister Marion.

His other sibling, brother Archie, tragically passed away when he was just 46 after suffering a heart attack.

Gordon loved his music - he was a huge David Bowie fan and loved Queen too - and had been a season ticket holder at Cappielow for many years.

He also loved his family holidays.

Stacy says owning a holiday home in Spain was always a dream for her dad - and one he was able to realise.

Gordon and Ann bought an apartment in Torrevieja and were able to spend great times there in recent years.

Stacy and the family are still coming to terms with his passing - and in his memory, they want to send a strong message to people across Inverclyde who have a relaxed attitude to coronavirus.

Stacy added: "This virus can take anyone - not just the old and unhealthy.

"My dad was still in good health and still working.

"You don't believe it will ever happen to you, not in your wildest dreams.

"It happened to us and now we've lost someone that shouldn't have gone."