Felixstowe: Tragedy led to tireless work for police

A VOLUNTEER who works tirelessly to help the families of police officers killed in the line of duty to rebuild their shattered lives has today been awarded the MBE.

Sue Brace, 53, of Foxgrove Lane, Felixstowe, started working with the Care of Police Survivors (COPS) organisation after her sister Pc Cheryl Lloyd was killed in a crash while responding to an emergency call in Ipswich six years ago.

Her patrol car spun out of control in West End Road and crashed into a stationary lorry.

Mrs Brace, a retired customs officer at the Port of Felixstowe, said she was “utterly gob-smacked” to be among the New Year’s Honours.

“I am quite shocked and I don’t feel I have done anything to deserve it – it’s not just me at COPS, and I have a really good team of people working there.”

For Mrs Brace, her award comes at the end of a year in which she has battled with illness – including overcoming meningitis – but carried on determinedly in her role as national president of COPS, gaining her MBE for services to the police.

COPS was sparked by a similar idea in America and offers a network of support for families who have lost loved ones while serving as police officers.

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Another Felixstowe woman, Elizabeth Griffiths, of Looe Road, receives an MBE for services to education.

She has worked for many years as a volunteer with young children with special needs with the Felixstowe Opportunity Group – originally St Mary’s Opportunity Group when it started 20 years ago – at its building in the grounds of the Maidstone campus of Felixstowe Academy.

She has also worked with youngsters at Causton Junior School – inspiring them to take part in the Felixstowe in Flower competitions, growing flowers in the school garden and winning the Felixstowe Schools’ Environmental Project.