TRIBUTES have been flooding in to a “nurse in a million”, charity volunteer and former ward sister from Newport who died suddenly last week.

Margaret Went, who worked at St Woolos Hospital for 26 years before retiring in 2008, died on Monday, July 14 after a busy weekend helping others.

Mrs Went, 71, who was born in Newport to Scottish parents, worked with charity Samaritans for 25 years and had just finished a weekend shift before she died.

The dedicated volunteer also worked at the service C.H.A.a.T., Care Home Ask and Talk, C.H.A.a.T., which aims to improve older people’s experience of nursing homes.

Denise Llewellyn, director of nursing at Aneurin Bevan University Health Board, said: “She was a real ambassador for nursing and a steadfast advocate for patients.

“Even though Margaret was retired from the NHS, I was overwhelmed at her dedication and unfailing commitment to continue to help people.

She added: “It is a very special kind of nurse who continues to use their skills and experience for the greater good and Margaret was exceptional.

“I feel privileged to have known Margaret.”

Daughter Geraldine Went said her mother was a keen rugby fan who absolutely adored her nine grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

Nurses Tanya Strange and Claire Aston said it was Mrs Went’s boundless enthusiasm which led to the development of the C.H.A.a.T. volunteer service.

“Always smiling and with an infectious laugh, Margaret was a treasured friend.

“C.H.A.a.T. is her legacy and we shall miss her dreadfully.

“Words cannot describe the deep sadness we feel at Margaret’s passing.”

Mrs Went also chaired the Gwent branch of the NHS Retirement Fellowship for the last few months before she died.

The national chairman of the Retirement Fellowship, Cynthia Matthews, said: “She tackled the role with enthusiasm and humour and was respected by all the branch members and the wider membership throughout the UK.”

Mrs Went joined the Samaritans 26 years ago and held a range of roles.

Samaritans director Peter Edmunds said: “It was with much sadness that we heard of the sudden death of Margaret. She was a longstanding and dedicated member of Newport Samaritans.

“She will be greatly missed - by her colleagues, the patients she cared for in their homes and the callers for whom she showed great empathy.”

The funeral will be held at 1pm on Monday, July 28 at St John’s Church, Newport, and then afterwards at Rodney Parade.