Hero Mandy overwhelmed at bravery gong

HEROIC Mandy Gavin today revealed she was “overwhelmed” and “chuffed to bits” to be crowned the overall Star of Suffolk.

HEROIC Mandy Gavin today revealed she was “overwhelmed” and “chuffed to bits” to be crowned the overall Star of Suffolk.

It was double delight for the courageous mother-of-four who had earlier picked up the Outstanding Bravery prize in the Stars of Suffolk Awards for the lifesaving rescue of Clare Scarfe.

She couldn't make the ceremony on Thursday because she is on holiday in India, but The Evening Star captured on video the moment she was told of her Outstanding Bravery gong.

The emotional footage was then played at the event, which was held in the atrium of Suffolk County Council's Endeavour House.

However, she was unaware she had also been declared the overall Star of Suffolk until her family text messaged her after the ceremony.

Mandy has since been following the coverage of the night on The Evening Star's website while in Goa, where she is helping a friend install solar-panelled showers at an orphanage.

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Mandy said: “I am chuffed to bits. I'm sorry I couldn't be there, but the sun was calling me.

“In a way, I am glad I wasn't there because I would have been too overwhelmed.

“I don't think it has sunk in. It doesn't seem real. I am so honoured to be given the overall award.”

Mandy, of Fritton Close, Ipswich, risked her life when she pulled nurse Clare from the wreckage of her burning car seconds before it exploded.

They were strangers, but they have become great friends since mother-of-two Clare's car accident on the A1071 at Hadleigh in November.

Clare, from Kersey, said she will never be able to repay her rescuer, but remarkably Mandy believes she would be lost without her new friend.

Mandy said: “We have got so much in common, it seems like I have known her for ages and ages.

“I am really glad I could help somebody like her. She's had such an impact on my life it is unbelievable.

“After the awards, she called me to say she loves me millions.”

What do you think of Mandy's achievements? Write to Your Letters, The Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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