Touching tributes for caring Laura

FRIENDS, family and colleagues have paid tribute to a young woman tragically killed in a road accident.

Former St John Fisher pupil Laura Maguire touched the hearts of all who knew her, and bosses at Leeds City Council have spoken of her dedication to her job as a social worker.

Chief officer for children and young people's social care Jackie Wilson said: "Laura was a much-loved and well-respected member of staff, who made a big impression from when she first started work with us in December 2008.

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"All of the staff who worked with her have said what a talented and committed social worker she was.

"She had a significant impact in improving the lives of children and families she worked with."

Laura, 23, also attended St Joseph's Primary School in Batley Carr and studied for her A-Levels at Heckmondwike Grammar School before gaining a degree in social work at York University.

She worked with families of children with disabilities. She died in Leeds General Infirmary on March 2, following the accident in Leeds on February 25.

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Ms Wilson said as a lasting tribute to Laura, of St John's Close, Heckmondwike, a new award will be created – the Laura Maguire Award for excellence in the first year of practice – to celebrate achievements in the service.

She added: "The whole service has been devastated by Laura's loss.

"We will miss her very much indeed, but such has been her impact on us that we will always remember her.

"There is a big hole in our service where a shining star used to be."

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Family members said Laura was well loved by everyone and was the sort of girl people took to immediately.

A collection of 1,000 was made at her funeral to Rainbow House, a respite centre for children with disabilities.