The 56-year-old was in and out of hospital between January and March after he contracted the virus and later Covid-pneumonia.
Despite his struggles in battling the disease – that saw him spend some time in intensive care – Cotterill was still in constant contact with his assistant Aaron Wilbraham.
He continued to manage the team, to the best of his abilities, from the Bristol Royal Infirmary as Shrewsbury eventually achieved League One safety.
Now, Cross – who played for the club from 1976-1986 – has hailed Cotterill’s determination to stay involved with the team and improve his health.
“It was incredible really,” Cross said.
“I know Steve from his time at Bristol City, he’s the type of guy that would do that, you know, a lot of people would’ve just stayed away.
“That is Steve. I was reading an article saying he rang the assistant 28 times in the first half, that’s the type of guy he is.
“He wants to be involved all the time, he had bad Covid and the after-effects of it, but that’s the type of guy he is.”
After more than 60 days in hospital Cotterill eventually made an emotional return to Shrewsbury in the final weeks of the campaign.
After a difficult season that saw Sam Ricketts lose his job in November, Cotterill was able to keep Town afloat.
Cross added: “You watch the results come in every Saturday, the vidiprinter comes across and they’d snatched a point or three, or they’ve lost and you’re disappointed. But the first set of results they strung together, both with and then without him, were incredible. They had that little quiet time where they couldn’t seem to get a win but got the result at the end to keep them up.”