Mother of Midlands teacher who died of COVID-19 also passes away due to the virus

The mother of the Midlands teacher who passed away earlier this month from complications of coronavirus has also passed from complications from the virus.

Columbia, S.C. (WOLO) — The mother of the Midlands teacher who passed away earlier this month from complications of coronavirus has also passed from complications from the virus.

Shirley Bannister was the mother of 28-year-old Demi Bannister, who passed away from COVID-19 complications on September 7.

“Shirley was an incredible leader for our college and our community, and more importantly for our students. She understands what it means for a student to be successful,” said Dr. Ronald Rhames, president of Midlands Technical College. “With Shirley and her daughter, and because of what both of them did for the community, it’s an incredible loss. It’s just an incredible loss is all I can say.”

Shirley was the department chair for nursing at Midlands Tech for the past seven years. She graduated from MTC as a teen, earning her nursing degree, before continuing and getting her Master’s.

“You know, Shirley and I share something in common. Both of us are MTC graduates. Now, she was a lot better than I was, she graduated at 19 years old, got her first nursing degree. And so that to me is a remarkable achievement, and it tells you what kind of person Shirley was,” said Rhames.

Rhames says he’s been hearing from students and others that interacted with Shirley on a regular basis about what kind of person she was.

“She had a passion for nursing, she had a passion for making people’s lives better, and she did that very well. She lived it, she believed it, she dreamed it. So her work with us, with this community, will surely be missed,” he said.

Rhames says it’s more important now than ever to follow the CDC guidelines to help curb the virus spread, so more tragedies like this don’t continue to happen.

“It simply magnifies the seriousness of what’s happening now in the environment today,” said Rhames. 

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