Hospital funds in memory of Gordon Johnstone

Valerie Johnstone and her children Kate and Erin hand over the cheque to Matron Julie Button, Staff Nurse Catherine Johnstone and Oncology Nurse Specialist Gillian Thorne at Alnwick Oncology Unit.
Valerie Johnstone and her children Kate and Erin hand over the cheque to Matron Julie Button, Staff Nurse Catherine Johnstone and Oncology Nurse Specialist Gillian Thorne at Alnwick Oncology Unit.

Throughout his life selfless Gordon Johnstone devoted himself to the care of others.

And now, following his death in December, a donation has been made in his memory for cancer care in communities.

We have worked extremely hard to provide a welcoming environment and this money will go towards improving this further and providing the extras that make a difference to patients, and help ensure they have the best experience possible.

Gillian Thorne, Oncology Nurse Specialist, Alnwick Infirmary

The Herald previously reported how fellow residents in Pegswood were so touched by Mr Johnstone’s dedication to his community that when learning of his death they placed commemorative baubles and messages on the village Christmas tree he was instrumental in securing.

Funeral services for the 52-year-old at St James’s Church in Morpeth and Traquair Kirk in Peeblesshire were both well attended, and £2,000 was collected for charity.

Now Mr Johnstone’s widow Valerie and daughters Kate, 11, and Erin, eight, have handed over the funds to Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust’s oncology units in Alnwick and Berwick – a cause chosen by Mr Johnstone himself.

Mrs Johnstone said: “We were all really blown away with the amount of money raised at Gordon’s funeral services and we would like to thank the many family, friends and colleagues for their donations.

“Gordon had had chemotherapy and knew first-hand how tiring it was and the importance of being able to receive treatment close by. He was extremely pleased when the Alnwick unit opened and would have been delighted that the money was going towards making a difference to fellow cancer patients.

“Throughout his life Gordon always thought of others before himself and it is fitting that this donation will benefit people when they’re going through a difficult time.”

As well as receiving treatment, Mr Johnstone knew about the units in his professional capacity, having worked for the healthcare trust for 35 years, his last role as supervisor for community hospital support services. He had received a Making a Difference Award for his work.

Oncology nurse Gillian Thorne said: “We are delighted that Gordon’s family decided to donate this money to help improve the experiences of patients receiving care in our oncology units at Alnwick and Berwick.

“He was a much-loved and valued colleague who went out of his way to help people whenever he could.”