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Friends' sunflower tribute raises funds for Joseph Weld Hospice
IN MEMORIAM: Sharon Booth, left, and Karen Hawkins raising money for Joseph Weld Hospice by selling sunflowers in memory of Ruth David
THEY were Ruth David’s favourite flower so it seemed fitting to her friends to sell sunflowers in her memory.
Ms David, 54, died of cancer last month and her friends wanted to do something as a tribute to her and raise money for the Joseph Weld Hospice.
So when the field of flowers Jackie Hyde and her husband Howard grew for pleasure bloomed soon after her funeral it seemed almost like a sign.
Mrs Hyde, who had her first job working with Ms David at the Beaminster vets surgery, where she was practice manager, said: “Ruth was just an amazing person, very kind and very generous to everybody.
“The first flowers started to come out a month after her funeral.
“It’s a really late crop and quite unusual to have them at this time of year. We looked at the flowers and thought: ‘Ruth’.
“The response has been incredible and the generosity of local people has been fantastic.
“Ruth gave so much to so many. This pales into insignificance beside her generosity but we felt we needed to do something.
"She was somebody who made a difference to a lot of people and anybody who knew her would say the same.”
Fellow friend Melanie King, who also knew Ms David for years, has been helping to sell the sunflowers at her Beaminster hairdressing salon, Mop Shop, and so far they have raised more than £500.
Mrs King said: “We had lots of sunflowers at her thanksgiving because it was her favourite flower.
“Jackie had lots of sunflowers and she let us have the field to sell for the hospice and we have sold at least three lorryloads already.
“It was incredibly sad to lose her. I have been friends with Ruth for a long time. She was born in Stoke Abbott and lived in Dorset all her life.
“She worked at Girling and Bowditch for 25 to 30 years.
“We very much wanted to do something in her memory.
“We are going to do something different next year but this just fell into place this year.”