A JUSTGIVING fundraiser in memory of a Hartlepool and East Durham successfully raised over £3,000 for the Great North Air Ambulance Charity.

Cindy Collins, aged 60 -mum of five and grandmother of nine, passed away suddenly despite the amazing efforts of paramedics and The GNAA's critical care team

Andy Mawson, paramedic as well as GNAA's director of operations, was among the responders who tried to save Cindy's life.

He said: "It was incredibly moving to hear of the resulting JustGiving memorial appeal to aid the charity's ongoing work.

"We know how hard it is to raise this amount of money, and the sacrifices that people make in order to donate,’ he added.

‘This means someone else can receive the same level of critical care in their time of need and, whenever that is, we will be doing so in Cindy's memory.’

Cindy's dad Norman was stationed in Singapore and it was here she spent her childhood years with her brother John and cared for by her mother Sheila

In later years Cindy worked as an auxiliary nurse, student mentor, teacher and other professions including a journalist.

It was as a journalist at the Hartlepool Mail where she met and later married photographer Tom Collins.

Tom, her husband of 23 years, said: "Her pride and joy were her children and grandchildren.

"She was one of the most loving and caring people a husband could have by his side.

"The laughter and a positive attitude to everything we did together was amazing. My memories of such a beautiful and highly talented and gifted person will stay with me forever.

"The support and kindness shown by family, friends and everyone who knew Cindy is overwhelming at times."

"I would just like to say a massive thank you to them all."

Cindy worked for Dignity at both Mason's Funeral Directors in Hartlepool and Speckman's Funeral Directors at Wingate for a total of 12 years.

Dignity area manager, David Harrison, said: "Cindy was quite simply one of a kind.

"She was a wonderful person to be around, someone who always lit up a room with her personality, boundless energy and humour.

"She was also extremely talented and determined in achieving any goal that she set for herself, she leaves a huge void both personally and professionally."

Close friend Denise Curtis said: "Cindy was a precious rarity. We were dazzled by her bright, generous spirit, her compassion and her appreciation for all things fun or funny.

"She was also extremely talented and determined."