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Remembering Jean 'Pippy' McCall

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Pippy with Action's Sarah StevensonIt is with great fondness, affection and appreciation that Action Medical Research remembers Jean ‘Pippy’ McCall who sadly passed away on Monday 11 June 2018 aged 98.

Pippy was absolutely instrumental in the formation of the Bramley Committee in 1966 and was fondly remembered as the matriarch of the group. As chairwoman she helped organise a number of fundraising activities across the region including a number of sponsored walks along the old Cranleigh railway line and the May Fairs in Bramley.

Sarah Stevenson joined Action in 1999 as a community fundraiser for the area and remembers Pippy well: 

“Such a lively, naughty, warm and intelligent lady – very intuitive and great fun to be around – Pippy was clearly the driving force behind many of the great fundraisers in Surrey from 1966 onwards. Many of Davina’s traits you can see in Pippy as she had real spirit and was so lovely to be around.”

Pippy was also responsible for introducing a young Davina McCall to the charity when she was just 9 years old. Later on in her life, she would bring Davina back on board in 2001. Before 'Davina’s Big Sussex Bike Ride' and ‘Dine With Davina’ events existed, Pippy would encourage her granddaughter to sign up to her first fundraiser: a sponsored walk in Portsmouth.

“’Davina’s Day Out’ was held in 2003 I think”, remembers Sarah. “Davina had already been a long-time supporter of the charity by this stage, but she was by now a really recognisable name on the telly.

“Pippy was always very proud of Davina and knew that her national exposure would be a tremendous asset for Action and of course she was right. A few years later the first ‘Dine With Davina’ was held in Southampton and we haven’t looked back since.”

Pippy’s funeral will be held on Saturday 30 June.

At the family’s request a collection for Action will be held in memory of Pippy’s dedication to the charity.

A tribute page has also been set up in her honour on the Action website.

We would like to offer our deepest condolences and sincere gratitude for everything that Jean ‘Pippy’ McCall did for Action in her lifetime. We will forever remember her passion and dedication to helping save tiny lives.

She will be greatly missed by all who knew her.