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‘Caring’ stabbing victim Jean Ryan was the ‘mum to the office’, colleagues say as husband appears in court on murder charge

PUBLISHED: 06:00 19 April 2016 | UPDATED: 10:30 20 April 2016

Police search the area around Gosford Way

Police search the area around Gosford Way

Tributes have been paid to a Felixstowe woman as her husband appeared in court accused of her murder.

Jean Ryan, 67, was described as the “mum to the office” of the shipping company in Felixstowe where she had worked for more than 30 years.

Mrs Ryan, who was formally identified yesterday, died after police were called to the home she shared with husband, 61-year-old Shaun Ryan in Gosford Way, Old Felixstowe, at around 10.30pm last Wednesday.

He is accused of stabbing her to death.

Close friend Megan Hewitt, who also worked with Mrs Ryan, said: “Jean was a lovely lady - she was very caring, honest, really hardworking, trustworthy, everything you could describe a nice person to be and completely undeserving of this event.

“She would have done absolutely anything for anyone.

“She was a mum to the office. She will be hugely missed by her colleagues and her colleagues were her friends, too.”

The couple had previously lived in Tacon Road on Felixstowe seafront for a few years.

One former neighbour described Mrs Ryan as “a lovely lady”.

She said: “She would always say hello and pass the time of day and was a really nice person.”

Another neighbour said: “She was really very nice. They were a quiet couple and kept themselves to themselves, private people, but would always speak if they saw you.”

They kept sporting dogs but had only been able to take one with them when they downsized to the bungalow they moved to in Gosford Way last year.

Shaun Ryan appeared before South East Suffolk Magistrates’ Court in Ipswich yesterday via a video link from Martlesham police investigation centre.

Represented by his solicitor Claire Hullock, Ryan spoke only to confirm his name and that he understood the time limit he could be held in custody for would run out on October 17.

He was told any trial on the charge would have to take place by then.

During the five-minute hearing the court was also told that Ryan was charged with the murder of Jean Margaret Ryan on April 13.

As bail can not be sought in the magistrates court by a defendant on a murder charge it was said Ryan would have to appear before a crown court within 48 hours for a judge to make a decision on whether he would remain in custody.

Normally Ryan would have appeared before Ipswich Crown Court yesterday afternoon, however Judge David Goodin was not available to hear the case. Therefore Ryan is expected to appear at the crown court today.

Alan Fletcher, chairman of the bench, told Ryan: “This matter is too serious for the magistrates’ court so it is being sent to the crown court. You will appear before a judge within the next 48 hours – hopefully tomorrow morning.”

A Home Office post mortem examination concluded that the cause of death was a stab wound.

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