A FILEY businesswoman has paid a moving tribute to the organiser of the Miss Scarborough competition who has died aged just 52.
Diane Yalezo spoke about the death of Vivienne Lee following her funeral at St Wilfred’s Church, York, on Thursday.
Miss Lee passed away following a fall at her apartment in York. She was found by her sister Veronica.
The funeral saw hundreds of mourners pay their respects, including Filey’s Rachel Richardson, who was runner-up in the Miss Scarborough contest.
Mrs Yalezo, who owns Desire of Filey, in Belle Vue Street, said Miss Lee’s death had come as a massive shock.
She added: “She was just such a lovely person and the world will be such a different place without her.
“I got to know her very well and I’m absolutely devastated.
“I spoke to her on the phone the day before she died and I just cannot believe she has gone.
“Vivienne contacted me shortly after this year’s Miss Scarborough and asked me if I would be interested in organising next year’s event with her.
“Since that time we became good friends and she would often ring me on an evening and we would have a good talk.
“She thought so much about other people and put them first ahead of herself and cared so much for the girls who took part in the events.
“I was really pleased when she asked me to help her and I remember her saying to me ‘I have a good feeling about you Diane and I am looking forward to working with you’.
“I would just like to pass on my thoughts to her sister Veronica and the rest of Vivienne’s family and let them know I am thinking of them at this time.”
Miss Lee was born in Wallsend, the daughter of a merchant seaman, and was a former Miss Sheffield, Miss Kent and Miss North Tyneside, as well as promotions manager at the Royal York Hotel.
Among the mourners at the funeral was Angie Beasley, a former Miss Scarborough, who is now the national organiser for the Miss England competition. Miss Beasley said: “She was a very special lady and will be remembered as a beauty queen herself. All the beauty queens present here today show what she created.”
The current Miss Scarborough, Rachael Cooper, added: “She gave so much to all of us; we miss her loads. When I entered the Miss England competition she looked after me so well.”