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BEM for services to voluntary work: Jean (Mary Jane) McFarland

Published 31/12/2015

Jean (Mary Jane) McFarland
Jean (Mary Jane) McFarland

The oldest of those honoured in the 2016 New Year's Honours list, 89-year-old Jean McFarland, says she is "shocked" to have been awarded a British Empire Medal.

"I don't even know who nominated me, so I was shocked when I heard the news, but I'm delighted to have been given the medal," the Enniskillen woman told the Belfast Telegraph last night.

The great-grandmother has been honoured for her voluntary work over 25 years in the out-patients' tea bar in the former Erne Hospital.

She started to help out making a welcome cup of tea and coffee for patients after she retired in 1985 as a supervisor in the Enniskillen telephone exchange.

"I had long admired the ladies who made the tea for the patients, they used to be known as the Pink Ladies, and once I retired, I decided to help out as well," she said.

"It was good to have been able to help out and I enjoyed the pleasure that the patients took when they needed their tea."

She has also volunteered for the Methodist Church she attends. Jean and her husband (92) hope to attend the ceremony at Buckingham Palace next year. They are parents to four adult children, 10 grandchildren and 14 great grandchildren.

Belfast Telegraph

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