'I Couldn't Imagine Doing Anything Else': Military Charity Volunteer Awarded British Empire Medal

Joan Osbourne said her charity work means "everything" to her, adding "I couldn't imagine doing anything else". 

A 91-year-old military charity volunteer has been awarded the British Empire Medal in recognition of her commitment to a charity that has been her "life". 

Joan Osbourne first visited Blind Veterans UK as a child with her father who was a member.

At the age of 16, the charity gave Ms Osbourne a job and decades later she continues to work there, helping visually-impaired veterans rebuild their lives.

Among those to have been helped by Ms Osbourne over the years was Bob, a double amputee who she later married.

Joan Osbourne's BEM.
Ms Osbourne said she "burst into tears" when she found out she would receive the medal.

Ms Osbourne said she "couldn't believe it" and "burst into tears" when she received a letter about being chosen for the honour.

The prestigious medal was presented to her by Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant for East Sussex at the charity's training centre in Brighton - her home town - in front of family and friends. 

The charity's chief executive, Major General Nick Caplin, said Ms Osbourne's spirit is "infectious" and that "life is much better when you know her". 

Ms Osbourne's role at Blind Veterans UK continues - she still runs both the bowls and social club.

She says the charity means "everything" to her and has been her "life", adding "I couldn't imagine doing anything else".