Obituary - Maureen Young, of Workington
Last updated at 20:43, Thursday, 09 February 2012
Tributes were paid at a packed funeral service about the practical life of compassion led by Maureen Young, of Workington.
A stalwart of Samaritans of West Cumbria, Mrs Young died of cancer after a short illness last month, aged 71.
She was a retired nursing matron, who worked in the hospice movement, in palliative care and for Macmillan Nurses.
She asked friends to pass on special thanks to nursing staff on Patterdale and Pillar wards at the West Cumberland Hospital, Whitehaven, where she died.
Mrs Young, known to friends as Mo, was an adopted child, a native of Bristol who overcame her own difficulties to find a place in her heart for anybody going through a tough time of it.
She was a worshipper at Workington’s United Church, where she was editor of the church newsletter, a member of its leadership team and the sound desk technician.
She was also a long serving member of the Whitehaven News talking newspaper reading team.
But not far from the centre of her life for more than 15 years was Samaritans.
She was a deputy director of the West Cumbria branch, based in Whitehaven, branch treasurer, treasurer of the Friends of Samaritans branch, and a diligent fund-raiser who had shaken a bucket on most of West Cumbria’s main streets and supermarket foyers.
She also personally ensured that every penny was used in the provision of a local service. On top of all that, she was a member of the branch’s team of listening volunteers.
Iain Johnson, branch director, said: “Her life with the Samaritans organisation was rich and fruitful.
“Mo contributed her love, empathy, wisdom and energy in abundance not only to the thousands of callers to the Samaritans service she encountered over the 15 years she was an active listener, but also to her colleagues to whom she acted as a well respected friend and mentor.
“Mo’s warm personality ensured that respect, and her calm, considered and understated supportive nature greatly contributed to the reciprocal feelings we had for her.
“It is an outrageous understatement to say that Mo will be missed, not least for the fiscal prudence she employed as treasurer to secure the future for the West Cumbria branch of Samaritans.”
Her home in Workington was at Chaucer Road, with close friends Andy and Jo Langford, whom she met as fellow travellers on a pilgrimage to The Holy Land.
Mrs Young walked with sticks and with difficulty but made light of her disability with strength and resolution allied to an easy charm, her friends said.
She also became a traveller who walked on the Great Wall of China, twice visited the re-enactment of Christ’s Passion in Germany, loved scuba diving, and was a member of the Institute of Advanced Motoring.
Her funeral service last week was held at Workington’s United Church, followed by cremation at Distington Hall.
The service was jointly conducted by two personal friends, the Rev Alastair Smeaton, lead minister of the United Church, and the Rev Jackie Spears, a former colleague in hospice nursing and retired Anglican vicar.
Mrs Sears said that Mrs Young’s life was driven by love and support for family, church and community and was never about money or possessions. Her death would leave a chasm in the lives of many.
Mrs Young leaves her three children, Heather, Peter and John, two grandsons and three great-grandchildren.
Donations made in her memory will be passed to Hospice at Home West Cumbria.
First published at 19:20, Thursday, 09 February 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
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