A 'champion of care in the community' dies after battling cancer

Gillian Mary Organ

Jill's family and friends have paid tribute following her death on December 3. - Credit: Gill Wilmot

A 'well-known and respected' woman who dedicated much of her life to helping others has died of cancer.

Gillian Mary Organ was diagnosed with myeloma in April 2019 and died at home on December 3, surrounded by her family.

Gillian, known as Jill, worked for many years in Weston College's library and as an assistant care home manager for men in supported housing.

Jill's love of cats was also well-known among many people, giving her the moniker 'Jilly the cat lady'.

A keen cyclist, Jill's family said she could often be seen around the town on her bike.

Growing up with her sister Rose, Jill went to Rose Green grammar school in Bristol and subsequently trained as a librarian.  She worked in Horfield library until her marriage to John in 1965.

Jill moved to Weston where her two sons Danny and Matthew were born. 

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When Dan and Matt were at school, Jill started work at Weston College as the welcoming face of the library. She was loved by colleagues and students.

She was described as 'the original human search engine' for her ability to seek out all manner of resources for lectures before the days of the internet. 

Also described as 'a champion of care in the community', she left the college to work for the Brandon Trust as an assistant manager facilitating independent living for men with learning difficulties. 

Even In retirement Jill continued to care for her many cats and worked tirelessly for a range of charities including Cats Protection, RSPB, the Children’s Society and volunteered at a local lunch club.

She was a talented musician who sang, played the piano and was popular on the regional folk scene as well as belonging to a choir group.

Jill's funeral is to be held on Friday at 11.30am at Weston Crematorium.