10:42AM, Thursday 12 December 2019
A daughter has paid tribute to her late mother who lived through two World Wars and enjoyed a Concorde flight with Jon Bon Jovi.
Freda Weyman passed away peacefully at the age of 107 on November 9 at Willows Riverside Park in Water Oakley.
Born in September 1912 in Vienna, Freda was the oldest female in the Royal Borough during her final years.
She had a daughter – Helga Currie – and son, Peter, who were also born in the Austrian capital, as well as three grandchildren.
Freda’s husband, John, died in 1999 at the age of 83 following a battle with cancer, and she moved to Willows in 2000 to be closer to her daughter.
Helga, who moved to Maidenhead in 1961, said: “It was hard looking after my dad in his ill health so I made sure that when she came down here, she had a good life.”
Freda’s early life in Vienna was followed by some respite from the war in Switzerland, where she perfected her skiing to an Olympic-standard level, enjoyed Vienesse dancing and rode her motorbike.
“If there was fun to be had, she found it,” Helga said.
The family moved to the UK in 1947, settling in Liverpool where Freda found work as a seamstress and made outfits for a girls’ choir.
She also ran a haberdashery shop with her husband, called Quality Stores.
A move to the Merseyside town of Southport followed, before Freda moved to Water Oakley just after the millennium. She stayed in the Willows park for nearly 20 years, and enjoyed strolls along the Thames.
“As she lived so near to the river, she often sat on the riverside with her chair, book and sandwich, and wave to the passing boats,” Helga said.
Freda suffered a stroke in 2003 but recovered well after a stint in hospital.
On her 90th birthday, Freda and Helga went on a birthday trip to New York on the Concorde.
“She used to stand on her balcony and say: look at that beautiful bird,” said Helga.
During her trip, she sat one row behind Jon Bon Jovi, and received a rendition of happy birthday from crew and passengers.
Helga said her mum ‘felt like a queen’ as she was given the birthday treatment across the pond.
Freda’s 100th birthday saw her enjoy a cruise along the Thames with her family and friends.
She died peacefully with her daughter by her side, and was buried at Oakley Court cemetery following a pink-themed service at St Michael’s Church in Bray, inspired by her favourite colour.
“I stayed up with her all night,” Helga said. “She had a nice death as deaths go.
“She will be sorely missed, but it was nice to hear people laughing during the funeral. She was full of fun.”
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