WEARSIDE has lost one of its best-loved and most respected teachers.
Tributes have been paid to Paddie Murray, who was passionate about her work and enthused hundreds of children over the course of her career in education.
She died after a long battle with an aggressive form of leukaemia.
Marj Barton – a former High Sheriff of Tyne and Wear – recalled the life and many happy memories of her friend, who died on Easter day.
She said: “Paddie was a wartime child living in Birmingham among the worst of the bombing, even, legend has it, helping her father dispose of a bomb.
“He died young and mother and daughter returned to Seaham, where her mother remarried. Paddie lived in Seaham for the rest of her life.
“Paddie passed her 11-plus, and we became lifelong friends.
“With the limited choice between teaching and nursing, we chose teaching and studied at Wynyard Hall.
“She excelled there too, becoming senior woman and starting to teach when only 19.
“Even then she showed huge potential to be on top of her subject, working hard to add an Open University degree to her qualifications.”
Marj, from Ryhope, added: “Paddie had a full and varied career, first at Silksworth Modern, then at Ryhope Grammar School.
“Finally, she was Head of English at Hetton School for 17 years, retiring in 1993.
“Fifty one years ago, she married a colleague, Ian Murray, and had two daughters.
“Ruth is head of her own scientific company, and Dorcas is an international company lawyer.
“Between them they have four sons, whom Paddie adored. They will never do better though, than their mum.
“Paddie was unique, beautiful, bright, witty, feisty, wise, caring and loved by us all. She is irreplaceable.”