Rob Rinder is grateful for his grandmother’s Jewish Care

Rinder described the charity as “a jewel in the crown of the Jewish community”


Rob and Frances take a selfie (Photo: Instagram @robrinder)

TV personality, barrister and JC columnist Rob Rinder has paid tribute to his late grandmother and the support she received from Jewish Care.

Posting on Instagram on Sunday, Rinder said: “My beloved Grandma Frances passed away yesterday at 96. She adored me, her grandchildren and great grandchildren with fierce love.

“What a limitless gift it is to have had her in my life. Hold those who love you truly and unconditionally close. And thank you @jewish_care.”

In the final days of her life, Frances, who grew up in the East End, was a resident at Jewish Care’s Stella & Harry Freedman House, formerly Lady Sarah Cohen House in Barnet. 

Speaking to the JC, Rinder said he couldn’t thank Jewish Care enough for the care they had provided to Frances and the family in the final days of her life.

He said: “Jewish Care really is a jewel in the crown of the Jewish community.

“When non-Jewish friends have visited my grandma in the past, they have all come away saying they can’t believe how lucky we are to have such an amazing system.

“The level of care and the quality is unmatched and the way they honour and respect the lives of our loved ones is priceless.”

Rinder said he has been incredibly lucky to have had three of his grandparents well into his 40s.

Recalling his Grandma Frances, Rinder said: “It is impossible to contain a life into a single paragraph or sentence. Frances was a loyal and loving grandmother. You would not find that kind of devoted loyalty in any other relationship. She was epic.”

He said Frances was so well loved that “doing a Frances” –to show her level of loyalty –  had been coined among those that knew her, including many of his own friends. 

Frances was the main breadwinner of her family by the age of 14 due to her parents’ health problems.

"Can you even imagine that now?” he said. "She worked in Debenhams and was always immaculately turned out.”

He said one of the fondest memories of the matriarch, who was married for 69 years, included how she took great pride when Rinder came to her to ask for her chicken soup recipe.

He said: “It is one of these things in Jewish families that is handed down and everyone is quite particular about it. Frances was overjoyed that I went to her over the other women in the family.”

After he had made it, his grandmother had phoned him to ask him how it had gone. “I told her the chicken had come out hard. She told me to ‘take that carcass back to the butcher’ and that they ‘must have sold me a dud one’.”

Frances was a central figure in the family with six grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

Rinder said: “Her central purpose in life was her family. She loved to kvell.”

Turning back to the care his grandmother had been shown during her final days, he said: “I am so proud about what it says about us that we have Jewish Care. For a small community, it sums up our nature perfectly.”

He added: “I think, as a community, when we are experiencing times of struggle, like we are now, it is hard to find the joy. Pride in Jewish Care allows us an opportunity for that.”

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