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Abbots Langley 'hero' Jessie Winyard died while volunteering at Watford General Hospital
An Abbots Langley woman who devoted her retirement to volunteering has been described as “a hero”.
Jessie Winyard was born in East London, the seventh child in a family of eight, and would have been 75-years-old on Saturday.
During the last 20 years of her life she volunteered at both Watford General Hospital and the British Heart Foundation.
It was during a regular visit to patients in the hospital in Vicarage Road on Wednesday that Ms Winyard started to feel unwell, and died of heart failure.
Her daughter Joanne Port said: “She was doing what she loved, and in her last moments she was cared for by her friends and heroes at Watford general and for that I am truly grateful.”
Ms Winyard worked for the BBC as a secretary and then became an Avon lady. She also worked in victim support for the police and was a personal assistant to the director of Taylor Woodrow.
After suffering from a heart attack 19 years ago, Ms Winyard became involved with patients panels for Watford, Hemel Hempstead and St Barts Hospitals, and later became chairman of all three.
Ms Winyard also volunteered for the British Heart Foundation, where she was named volunteer of the year and met the Queen.
Ms Port said: “She was a very active volunteer and her picture was used in the BHF’s marketing material. Every week she was doing something.
“She was my hero. She was very selfless and always thought of other people. Mum used to cook Christmas dinner and take library books round to old people, some of which were younger than her
“She never grew old, her diary was always full. I wouldn’t be surprised if 500 people turned up at the funeral”
The funeral will be held on the February 13, at 11.20am at West Herts Crematorium.
Flowers can be sent to the Funeral Directors J & S Funeral Services, in School Mead, Abbots Langley.
Did you know Jessie? Contact the news desk on 01923 216295, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.