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Army lad was killer heat victim.

Byline: By ROD CHAYTOR

A TOP army recruit set to join Sandhurst with Prince Harry died after a blunder by medics.

Super-fit Alex Francis, 23, collapsed after running a half marathon during a gap year in Africa.

Doctors in Sierra Leone thought he had killer virus Lassa fever. He died a day after collapsing in November last year.

But his dad, hospital consultant David Francis, believed his son, due to start officer training last May, had heatstroke.

And he would have survived if he had got the right basic treatment.

Mr Francis, 52, of Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands, pushed for an investigation. South Staffs coroner Andrew Haigh has now ruled that heatstroke killed Alex.

Dr Francis and wife Vicki were traumatised by not being allowed to see him because of risk of catching Lassa.

He said: "I felt I owed it to Alex to get his death certificate changed because he had been labelled as some form of toxic

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Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Dec 19, 2005
Words:164
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