David Mitchell: Tributes to generous charity worker who helped the elderly
The 89-year-old died at the Royal Free from coronavirus
16 April, 2020 — By Helen Chapman
TRIBUTES have been paid to a music teacher, printmaker and long-standing charity worker, who has died after contracting coronavirus.
David Mitchell, 89, a trustee at Age UK Camden, had lived in Hampstead with his partner of 60 years, David Hass. Mr Mitchell was described as a lynchpin for the older people’s charity, which he had helped run since 2013.
Corinna Hyman, who met David 15 years ago through her work with Age UK, said: “My last email from him was really poignant. Because everyone was worried about food he emailed to say he was going to take some to the food bank. It was after that he came down with it. It was absolutely classic David – generous of spirit and generous in practice.”
Ms Hyman said Mr Mitchell would always be first to walk in a room and make a point about a lack of diversity.
She said: “He always had that kind of equality agenda in his head – always had the bigger picture in his head. His quiet passion for supporting others and changing the world for good was so inspirational, especially as he always approached it with humour and kindness.”
Mr Mitchell was instrumental in setting up Opening Doors London which started off as a support group for men at Henderson Court and is now a London-wide organisation providing support services for the older LGBT+ community and a subsidiary of Age UK Camden.
He became the charity’s ambassador and then a member of its board of trustees. In 2017, he was named the national Age UK Trustee of the Year award.
Age UK Chairwoman Mary Burd said: “David always had a passionate determination to see that what he believed were the ultimate goals of the charity to provide the very best for older people whoever they were, were achieved in the fairest and most effective way”
David Mitchell died at the Royal Free Hospital on Friday April 4.