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Katheryn Winnick says ‘it is must not be given to anyone else’ as she went home with Lagertha’s shield.



After six seasons and an array of sword fights, Katheryn Winnick found it harder than she anticipated to conclude her acclaimed role as Lagertha in History’s hit series Vikings.



The Canadian actress, 41, tells PEOPLE that she was “extremely emotional” after the cast and crew wrapped production on the series’ sixth and final season in Ireland last year.

“I don’t think it really even hit me,” Winnick says in this week’s issue, on stands Wednesday. “I’m flying back to L.A. and as I’m sitting and waiting for the rest of the boarding to take place, the steward comes up to me. She’s like, ‘Are you okay?’ And I don’t know even how to describe it ideally, just busted out in tears.”

“And the only thing I could say is, ‘Goodbye,’ ” she adds. “It seemed like someone passed away. And she really thought it was some deep family member, or that. … And it was just, it was like that. It’s hard to even articulate that, I’m saying goodbye to a show.”

But Winnick didn’t leave Ireland empty-handed. She walked away with Lagertha’s most prized possession as a souvenir.

“I got Lagertha’s sword,” she says. “It’s a good one. Also, her very first armor. It’s the very first one, is done by Calvin, who’s a close friend of mine in Ireland. He’s such a great brother craftsmanship and just to have her armor, her battle field outfit.”

To add to the souvenir list, Winnick went home with Lagertha’s shield, which she says is “one of my prized possessions that everybody in the cast signed.”

“And it’s part of the crew members like, to have a whole shield of everybody’s signature, which I love,” she adds. “And also had this incredible horn that has Lagertha’s journey throughout the whole thing. And it took over a hundred hours to make. It’s beautiful horn.

And also Michael Herz brought the most beautiful poem.”While the hit series will end in 2020, History has already announced that a spinoff, Vikings: Valhalla, will air on Netflix and take place a century after the end of the original series.

And should Winnick be asked to join the spinoff, her answer is an easy one.

“I would love to be involved,” she says. “I don’t know if it’s coming back and just being a part, either as an actor or a director or something like that, or just coming in and having a pint with my crew members, whatever it is, it’s my family back there.”

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