My mate

15 December 2011

Retired Prison Officer Fran Atkinson was only in her fifties when she lost her battle against cancer in February this year.

Her eldest granddaughter, eighteen year old Jodie Turner of Leigh is dedicating a light on the Wigan & Leigh Hospice 'Light for a Life' Tree to celebrate the life of her beloved Grandma.

Special thanks to 'my mate'

Jodie says, "I am the eldest of nine grandchildren, and had a very close relationship with my Grandma.She was a big influence on me and I did my best to support her when she was ill. I sometimes used to stay over at weekends.

She was a straight-talking lady and more like a 'mate' than a grandma. We had many laughs and good times together.Always the life and soul of any party she was a big influence on all of our lives."

Jodie continued, "She must have been well-respected at the Prison because when she retired after 23 years, they renamed the wing she worked on - 'The Fran Atkinson Wing'. The Governor told me he had never known this to happen in any Prison before.Even the inmates held a memorial service for her.

Dedicating a light in her memory is my way of showing my love for a great lady who was a positive influence on the lives of a lot of people."

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