‘Absolute superstar’ from the banks of Loch Ness honoured by royalty
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A woman who manned Covid-19 helplines for the Red Cross has been royally rewarded.
Volunteer Linda Izquierdo Ross (61) was given a special commemorative coin by HRH Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge to thank her for her work during the pandemic.
Mrs Izquierdo Ross, from Drumnadrochit, who is also a volunteer with the RNLI both locally and nationally, said she was “very pleased” to be given the medal, one of only 150 handed out.
She said so many people had gone the extra mile during the health crisis, adding: “I have helped other people as a volunteer because of the help I, and other members of my family, have received.
“I have always felt the need to give back. It has been a real pleasure to be able to help people during the pandemic from my home near Drumnadrochit.”
She said that when her family initially moved to Australia from Spain in the 1950s, they were helped by the Red Cross and after almost drowning as a child, she has always been interested in water safety – which is why she helps the RNLI.
During the pandemic Mrs Izquierdo Ross has been on call to offer support to countless people in Scotland and around the UK who have endured bereavement, financial hardship or who have just needed a listening ear.
She said: “It has been a very difficult time, and I am pleased that I was able to help. Everything I have done has been with the support and help of many other people so this commemorative coin, although given to volunteers, is also for the staff members who have made it happen.”
Colleagues at the RNLI said they were proud, adding: “Linda has been with us from the very start and has put in countless hours of volunteering for the RNLI, as the treasurer and education volunteer, and later joining the boat crew.
“She is now a launch authority at Loch Ness, while still doing the treasurer and education roles, and gives her time as a member of the RNLI Scottish Council.
“She was even busier than usual during lockdown, manning the British Red Cross coronavirus support line and providing much-welcomed practical and emotional support to those who needed it.
“Our team are absolutely thrilled to see her recognised. We would like to say a massive well done and congratulations for being an absolute superstar.”