Sunderland carer retires aged 79, after spending years caring for people often younger than herself
The carer with a heart of gold: and a passion for work
She's the carer who has given 25 years of service - and she's 79 years old.
Margaret Fittes, known to her friends as Paddy, has been providing care for people - often younger than herself - at Donwell House since 1998.
She's done it with love, passion and dedication and has finally called it a day.
But before she did, she called in to the home to meet colleagues after officially retiring a few weeks ago.
'I will still help out until the day I die'
And while her last working day is behind her, Paddy won't be saying goodbye just yet. She told the Sunderland Echo: "I will still be calling in until the day I die.
"I love these people. I am nearly 80 and I can't do it as a job any more but I shall still come down to the home and help out.
'I'll come down and make them a nice cup of tea'
"It will always be my passion. I will come down and make them a nice cup of tea."
Paddy wasn't expecting the wonderful surprises she got on her retirement. She said: "I have had a lovely day. I got a badge and I had a dance with the Mayor. We are good pals now!"
Staff also surprised her with a party and a very special video. It was full of lovely messages from people who worked with Paddy.
'Who is going to run rings round the young uns now'
They said they would miss her and one asked: "Who is going to run rings around the young uns now."
Margaret previously worked in a cigarette factory in Wallsend until it closed, and at Prestos in The Galleries in Washington.
'We are going to miss you, you know'
She also worked at a butchers in Concord until it closed and then joined the care home in 1998.
She has just retired after 25 years of working as a carer at Donwell House.
Another message on the video said: "We are going to miss you, you know."
Paddy told the Echo why she had so much love for her job.
"It can happen to anyone. No-one knows if they are going to go into a home.
'You have to have a passion to work in a nursing home'
"You have to have a passion to work in a nursing home and a love for it. And I have worked with some fabulous people over the years."
The mother of three and grandmother of seven, who has lived in Washington for 40 years, added: "I will still come to the home for a bit chat."
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