EULOGY FOR OUR DEAR MUM, AUDREY WARD, GIVEN AT THE WAKE*God has called our beloved mother home, to a place of pure love, peace, and light, to sing and dance among the angels, and shine in her body of light, her wings taking flight.Safe in God’s loving care, safe from all fear and pain, reunited with her dear husband and family once again.*Audrey Mabel Richardson Ward, loving and beloved daughter, sister, aunt, and wife, wonderful and loving mother of 3, grandmother of 4, and great grandmother of 5. A good and honorable woman, with a kind, compassionate and generous nature. Dad says in his ‘Audrey’s Story’ how she has shown compassion throughout her life, and unselfishness she has displayed since the day it was his good fortune to meet her. Mum never liked the name Mabel, I guess she didn’t like how it sounds, but it means lovable, loving, and beautiful, which indeed she is, both inside and out. Of all Mum and Dad’s siblings and their spouses, Mum has survived the longest, being the last to pass on. God bless her! And how fitting that her birthday is so close to Thanksgiving and was most always celebrated on that day we give thanks for our many blessings. For what a precious blessing you have been, our dearest Mum. Mum was brought up in a quite creative and musical family. We’ve seen photos of the lovely garden her Dad had created with sculptures, fish pond, and aviary with budgie birds he used to breed. She was reminiscing about the past to me some years ago and said her Dad was a good singer with a nice base voice, and would be asked to sing at family gatherings, along with her mother and uncles, but her father’s voice was the best. They had a good collection of classical records and enjoyed beautiful music, which Mum, and Dad also, did throughout their lives. She said as a child she did tap dancing and sang in a choir. She has always loved to sing and it made me happy in recent years to hear her singing to songs on the TV. And she was a great dancer. Mum said she was in the Rangers (like the Girl Guides) and the netball team (like basketball) at school. She did volunteer work as a nursing assistant. Though she did not have a lot of higher education, Mum liked to say she always had a lot of common sense! Indeed our Mum was very creative artistically. As we know, she worked for her father’s professional photography business, doing retouching of the actual negatives and also coloring of the photographs by hand, which was very detailed, precise work. In his ‘Audrey’s Story’ Dad said she worked very hard, sitting for hours retouching the photographs, and then, during the war years, would continue retouching in the evening in their family air raid shelter, and this with the ever present threat of German planes flying overhead. She and her Dad were members of the Birmingham Professional Photographers Association, and attended a number of photography conventions. They were once in a play together about photographers in heaven, dressed as angels. Now she is our angel in Heaven.And Mum kept up her artistic talents in later years. I found a business card of hers which must have been in the early years of her marriage, which said ‘Audrey Ward, Decorative Painting, Custom Orders Taken.’ And we all know of the many beautiful hand painted ceramics she did over the years. My brother Jim must have gotten his artistic talents from her. Mum served her country honorably during the war. In England, because so many of the men were away in the service, the women were called up to work in the Women’s Land Army. She had said she had a choice to go into the Women’s Air Force, Army, or Land Army. She chose the Land Army, which she joined at the age of 20, as she preferred not to go overseas and also liked being outside working. She said it was very hard work – stacking bails of hay, driving tractors, and picking potatoes, brussel sprouts and other vegetables, and as Dad said – with her bare hands, nourished with a breakfast of only oatmeal, a tablespoon of milk, and no sugar, as food, and many other things, were rationed in England during the war years. And of course, Mum and Dad’s beautiful love story and 67 1/2 years of marriage began when they met during the war when Mum was in the Women’s Land Army and Dad was a Staff Sergeant in the U.S. Army. Dad tells in his ‘Audrey’s Story’ how in 1944, at a tea dance held in a beautiful country mansion taken over by the Red Cross, he met ‘a cute, precious girl’ and how beautiful and sweet she was. Dad was very impressed with her dancing saying ‘Audrey was a great dancer. She really could Jitterbug.’ And he wished he had a video tape of her dancing. He also said she was very serious and conscientious, and with a sweet innocent nature. He goes on to say ‘As weeks and months passed, I found myself falling deeper and deeper in love with Audrey, in love with her personality, sweetness, sincerity, sense of fair play, and precious looks, topped with a smile that would appeal to all.’ Dad said how their wedding day on February 11, 1945 was cold and snowy, but the warmth of their love neutralized that, and he would never forget Audrey walking towards him, how radiant, precious, and lovely she looked. Some time later Mum was honored at a special dinner for war brides. There is a beautiful photo there from this dinner, along with Dad, and Mum’s parents. Our Mum was sensitive and gentle (a beautiful thing which the world needs more of). She cared very much about her family, and especially could not bare cruelty to children or animals, which when she saw on the news or ads for the ASPCA would upset her very much. She loved pretty, sweet, delicate things, and her favorite color was pink (which represents love and the heart energy center, chakra). But she was also very strong and courageous too (and in fact the name Audrey means strong). For example, she was 5 months pregnant with me when she came over on the ship from England in March 1946 to join Dad in the U.S., and though the sea was very rough and other women were getting sea sick, Mum did not get sea sick at all. On the contrary, after all that food rationing in England, she was enjoying full meals with delight! And she was taking care of some of the other young women who were sick, as well as their babies! Also, as Dad had said, it took courage at quite a young age, to leave her parents, her family and good friends, her country and a familiar way of life, even changing her religion, to come to a new country, with a different culture and sometimes very different way of doing things. I had found in an old wallet of hers a note she had written which said ‘Tough times never last, but tough people do’ which she told me she found helpful. As our mother she was mostly kind and loving but she could also show ‘tough love’ on occasion when it was needed. And of course it has taken courage and strength to deal with various illnesses, dementia, and the depression, anxiety and severe panic attacks she had experienced for years, which would be very frightening to her and to anyone. But she would just pray and ask Jesus to help her, and would get through them. For these and many other reasons I am so proud of you Mum. You have been an inspiration. So thank you so much dear Mum for all your love and caring, patience and understanding. Thank you for giving me life. Thank you for showing such appreciation for things we did. Thank you for taking such good care of Jim and Steve and me, for guiding and supporting us, seeing us through sick days and other childhood problems – making boo-boos better and coughs and colds go away! Thank you for loving Dad with all your heart, taking good care of him, and for working as a waitress in a lovely restaurant early in your marriage so that he could finish his Boston College studies. Thank you Mum for your many prayers for us all. I especially remember in more recent years, seeing you sitting on the edge of your bed each night before going to sleep, hunched over with the picture of Jesus (you had a new one but you can see how worn the old one is) and our photos in your hands, praying for each one of us individually, starting with Dad. Thank you Mum, and Dad, for fun times and laughter, for heart warming holiday celebrations on Thanksgiving and Christmas, with your delicious meals. Even though you often did not have enough confidence in yourself or your cooking, it was always delicious. And Easter bunnies and Easter baskets full of goodies. And for family vacations in beautiful England, Wales, and Italy, and at Cape Cod and Disneyworld in Florida. Thank you for wonderful times I remember from childhood – As a kid I remember in the summer riding our bikes with my Mum and other mothers and daughters in the neighborhood. And neigborhood block parties, so much fun all these things were.Thank you for good times watching ‘Dancing with the Stars’ and ‘American Idol’, and Andrea Bocelli, Andre Rieu, and other wonderful music programs on PBS. And ‘ Call The Midwife’, ‘ Downtown Abbey’ and good movies. How you laughed at that funny one with Meryl Streep about that singer with the horrible voice! And beautiful and sacred Christmas Eves singing carols together and watching Midnight Mass. Even when you had dementia you could still remember the words to various songs we would sing together. How I will miss all that with you my sweet Mummy. One time when someone was singing ‘There’s a Place for Us, Somewhere’, or Carol King and James Taylor singing ‘You’ve Got A Friend’ on PBS, you had tears in your eyes telling me that Dad and you used to sing these to each other. And how much you missed Dad. Thank you too for your compassion and love for animals and birds, you and Dad taking such good care of various pet dogs, cats, and birds over the years, including my dear parrot Bobbi, and some homeless cats you used to feed in one of the neighborhoods. Thank you Mum for all these and so much more. Thank you being our Mum, Nana, Great Nana, and Dad’s beloved wife. We all love you and miss you Mum, so very much.*And now our Sweet English Rose still grows and blooms on the other side, a lovely flower in God’s heavenly garden.* For as we know, there is no death really, it is just a changing of form, and you are with us in our hearts and memories forever. Where there is love, we are never parted. It is the Love that we take with us to our next life. God bless you Mum, Dad, and all of our precious family.Amara Patricia Ward

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  1. Amara,Jim and Steve,So sorry to hear of your momΓÇÖs passing.She was such sweet and loving lady.Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.Lots of love.Susan Ward and Sarah&Michael Daly

  2. Dearest Amara & Family,I remember years ago having met your Mom which left an indelible impression of a dear, sweet, and beautiful soul. My heart goes out to you with deepest condolences upon her passing. May she be resting in Divine Peace and be surrounded by loving angels; all the while climbing higher and higher into God’s loving arms. There can be no doubt that He can’t wait to welcome her Home.Love, Vibhuti

  3. To my beloved mum, I miss you and love you so very much. The tears keep flowing again when I think of you and special times we shared, or hear certain beautiful music we loved, or think of how you suffered with the dementia, or the fear and anxiety you often felt. Thank you for being my wonderful mother, my sweet mummy (you loved when I called you this). Thank you for your love and caring, your kindness, patience, and support. For your many prayers for us your family, and for your gentleness and strength. You are a beautiful being, an inspiration, and a precious blessing to us and to this world. I am grateful to have been by your side when you passed, and trust you are resting in peace and love, free from pain and fear, with Dad and your family in Heaven. God bless you my sweet mummy. You are with us in our hearts and memories forever, our sweet English rose, a lovely flower in God’s heavenly garden.

  4. Dear Amara, Jim and Steve, My sincerest condolences. Aunt Audrey was always a favorite of mine. With her English accent, beautiful face and lovely demeanor, it was somewhat of a contrast from what I was used to growing up. Amara, I had tears in my eyes reading your wonderful tribute to your Mum. It was an education for me learning about your motherΓÇÖs early years. What a star she was! The love your parents had for each other was always apparent to me and very special. Living in different parts of the country I never knew how the three of you grew up. Your description of your family life was so sweet. Thank you for giving me a glimpse into the life of the James and Audrey Ward family. I loved it. Love to you, Jim, and Steve, as well as the entire family. ML

  5. Dear Amara and the whole family, I am sorry for your loss. I know you loved her so much. She sounds like a great lady. Love, Marian

  6. (I copy this beautiful message that Roger posted on my Facebook page)Peace to your mom, peace of heart and mind to you. She was love as are you. With love, her life was worth living. It brought a contribution to the heavenly vibration that Earth is becoming. May your connection to her continue through this and all dimensions. Love will see through all.

  7. (I copy this that Grace posted on my Facebook page)May she soar on wings of love amongst her angelic family of light and continue to spread light in her celestial light body. Much love to you and your family dear Amara. <3

  8. Amara, Jim, and Steve,It is so sad to lose your mother, no matter how long you have been blessed with her presence. My heart goes out to you all. Audrey was the sweetest, kindest woman and we all loved her very much. She is with her Jim now, and I’m sure very happy. They had such a special marriage. Please don’t let this be the end of seeing all of you. We love the Long Island branch of the family very much.Much love and prayers are with all of us who have lost a very special woman and the last remaining member of that generation.

  9. Dear Amara and the whole family, I am sorry for your loss. I know you loved her so much. She sounds like a great lady. Love, Marian

  10. (This I copied from a FB message. They also sent a lovely condolence card)Our love & prayers to you all, Aunt Audrey was a lovely lady & we loved her dearly, she is now at peace bless her, Sylv & Dave xx

  11. (I copied this from a FB message)I’m so sorry very sorry for your loss Amara. My deepest condolences to you and your loved ones. May your Beloved Mama be at peace in Divine Mother’s Embrace.

  12. (I copied from my Facebook page)So sorry my dear love..please accept my sincerest condolences…and know she is always close to you and shining her magnificent light upon you.

  13. (Copied from my FB page)So sorry to hear about your mom, Amara. Prayers for you, your family and of course your dear mother. Blessed be.

  14. (Copied from my Facebook page)So sorry Amara. You are in my thoughts and prayers. Prayer going up right now for you and your family.

  15. (Copied from my FB page)God bless you and your beautiful mother, Amara… What a lovely tribute – life is precious.

  16. (I copied this from my Facebook page)She was a shining star like you Amara (and a classy dresser). Beautiful honoring words. Ageless Love. Bright blessings, Heavenly Love, Angelic Light & Strength be in your heart. Rest up deeply. Let go.

  17. (I copied this from my Facebook page)Dear Heavenly Father, We ask that you envelope our beloved Audrey Richardson-Ward in your love. We ask that you keep our dear Angel Daughter Amara strong and we ask that we are guided to know how best to help. We ask that the light continues to flow through Amara and her connection with sweet Mom grows even stronger daily! In the name of Jesus Christ, �Amen

  18. (I copied from my FB page)Blessings and prayers for both of you. It feels like she is in a beautiful place with her angels.

  19. (Copied from my FB page)Love to both your souls . . . May her spirit soar, and may yours find comfort.

  20. (All these I copied from my FB page)Karamvir Singh – May her soul rest in peace.Dawn Kirk – Thinking of you. Very grateful you were there.Andrew Kaen – my condolences.Lynne Salomon Miceli – Sending prayers for her and for you.Catherine Outeiral – Amara, I’m so sorry for your loss.Keenuane Umai – Much love. Desmond Thane – Sorry to hear, she looks Lovely.

  21. (Copied from my FB page)What a beautiful eulogy, Amara. So sorry for your loss. Condolences to you all. May she rest in peace and all of you be surrounded by love and healing.

  22. (Copied from a FB message)I’m truly so sorry for the loss of your mother. I know how much you loved her and how important she is to you. My condolences to you and your family at this sad time. Xoxo

  23. Hi Nana, I love you and I miss you so much. Since you had been living with Mummy Amara and me, I always liked when Amara would take me into your bedroom to say hello, and you were always so happy to see me and said how beautiful I am. But then when you recently went to hospital and the nursing home, and Amara took me in and you weren’t there, I wondered where you were. Mummy Amara told me but I didn’t understand. And before that, Mummy Amara and I thank you so much for all the many years you and Papa took such good care of me and taught me all the cute words to say, and whistles, and songs, and some I heard on the TV. And I also loved at bedtime, when you Nana would rub my head, and Papa would tell me a bedtime story about what we would do the next day. And then later after Papa went to the hospital and nursing home, and then much later to Heaven, Mummy Amara would come to take care of you Nana and me, and I loved how you both would tell me the prayer each night before I go to sleepy. They had told it to Papa many times and it always made him smile, about how everybody loves me, including Papa, Nana, and Amara, and Jesus, Mary, and St. Francis of Assisi, and St. Anthony, and they always ended it by saying ‘And Papa says, God bless you, and Good night, Go bless!’ Amara loves that and so do I. And now Amara tells me every night the same prayer, and also how much she loves me, and what a good bird I am, and thanks me for everything, and ends it by saying, and Mummy and Nana and Papa say dear little one Bobbi, have a good cozy sleepy, and good night, go bless. Now Nana you are in Heaven with Papa and all our Ward family dear bird and animal companions, including Skippy, Lassie, Chelsea, Muffin, the Joey birds, Mr. & Mrs. Chippy, Misha, Molly, Emmett, Bailey, Emma, Mush, Geegee the guinea pig and the Japanese Nightingales, and all the Ward family birdies and animals, all very much loved. Thank you dear Nana, and Papa, and Amara, for all your love and care. And love to Uncle Jim and Uncle Steve too. I love you all very much. ‘Doo doo do do doooh’ (the PC Richards whistle). from Bobbi, your parrot. xxx

  24. Oh my gosh, silly me. I forgot to add to my last candle memorial – my parakeets Nelly, Moondance, and Sundance, all so precious and loved. And any other animals or birds I may have forgotten. So sorry.

  25. Hi Mom even though my heart breaks that you are no longer with us I feel your presence and love every day as I do dad’s. Your love and kindness continues on inside all of us. Your grand children and great grand children love you so much. Mom and dad please pray for all of us. I love you both.

  26. We love you so much, Nana. We’re going to miss you every day. You have so many people that love you, but now you’re with Papa, so be happy and rest. XOXOXO

  27. (I copied from his Facebook message to me)Dear Amara, I am very saddened by the passing of your mother. I remember Audrey as a kind and loving person I had the chance to know and appreciate. My condolences and love to you and your brothers.

  28. (copied from my Facebook page on June 18)Dear Amara, I am very sad and sorry for your loss. Condolences to you and your family.

  29. Irael sent a beautiful sympathy card with a beautiful comforting message, in which she wrote the following (which brings tears to my eyes, and which she said I could post on the website) – To my dear friend, Amara, Your Mom was much loved. I only met your Mom a couple of times, but her passing has touched me. She was a beautiful soul who fought long and hard to stay alive. love, Irael

  30. Our cousin Kathy attended the Wake and brought a very beautiful mass and prayer card from her and Frank, with Perpetual Membership for mum in the Marianist Spiritual Alliance, to be forever remembered in Marianist Masses and Prayers. And there are very comforting messages shown inside the card. And on June 18 she also sent this email – Oh Amara, what a lovely tribute to your mom!!! And of course, so true. May she rest in peace. I, too, am very glad to have made the trip to Smithtown to help send Aunt Audrey on her way and to visit with all of you. Too long and too far apart are our chances to get together.I know you will all miss your mom so much but, as you said, she will be happy with Uncle Jim and all of the extended family in heaven… so many of them are there. Do keep in touch.Much love, Kathy

  31. Marian, who also attended the Wake, brought a beautiful Mass and Prayer card for mum, from … (I will get the name and add it later)

  32. Our cousin Chrisy also sent a beautiful condolence card, in which she wrote – Amara, So many happy memories of family get-togethers. So sad that her generation is gone in our family now. Hopefully we will have more wonderful times together. Take care. Prayers for Audrey. Such a wonderful person. Love, Chrisy

  33. In June we received very kind sympathy cards from Joel and all the Visiting Nurse Service New York (VNSNY) Hospice Care Team. Joel (social worker) who is very nice and caring, had also left me a condolence phone message.Also from the Administration and Staff of the Queens Boulevard Extended Care Facility (Mum’s nursing home).And also from the Queen of All Saints Cemetery.

  34. For my birthday, July 22, I started a Birthday Fundraiser on Facebook for the ASPCA in Memory of My Mother, Audrey Ward. Our mum cared a lot about animals and in recent years whenever she saw the advertisements on TV showing the ASPCA rescuing abused and neglected animals, it was upsetting to her to see such cruelty, and we were thinking about giving a monthly donation, but somehow never got around to it. My goal on FB is to raise $100 or more. In addition to this fundraiser, I plan to hopefully start giving a monthly donation in her memory.

  35. After Dad passed I had found several of those mass and prayer cards from the Sacred Heart Spiritual Society, blank ones, that Dad had in his dresser (showing he must have liked them). Therefore I enrolled him in the Society, as of June 16, 2013 (Father’s Day). So I am also enrolling Mum in the same, as of July 31, 2018 (7 weeks after her passing) as I don’t want to wait until her birthday or Mother’s Day (And I like the numerology in this date – 11 and 11 equaling 22, both master numbers). It says ‘To hallow the memory and bless the soul and to implore God’s tender blessings, (their name) is hereby enrolled in the Sacred Heart Spiritual Society, and will share in the daily Mass and prayers offered for all members of the Society. At the request of: … ‘ And it has a beautiful picture of Jesus and Psalm 23 and other prayers.

  36. After Dad passed I had found several of those mass and prayer cards from the Sacred Heart Spiritual Society, blank ones, that Dad had in his dresser (showing he must have liked them). Therefore I enrolled him in the Society, as of June 16, 2013 (Father’s Day). So I will be enrolling Mum in the same, was going to do so as of July 31, but have decided to enroll her starting from her birthday, November 26, 2018. The card says ‘To hallow the memory and bless the soul and to implore God’s tender blessings, (their name) is hereby enrolled in the Sacred Heart Spiritual Society, and will share in the daily Mass and prayers offered for all members of the Society. At the request of: … ‘ And it has a beautiful picture of Jesus and Psalm 23 and other prayers.

  37. I want to thank you for being a wonderful mother-in-law and a great nana to your granddaughters. You are missed by all of us.

  38. (sent by email on June 18, 2018 which I had not seen until much later)

    Dear Amara, My memories of Aunt Audrey are vivid. I remember her warm and welcoming voice, her kindness and warmth and most of all her true love for Uncle Jim.
    Aunt Audrey was a pure soul that spread her love and looked at the world with optimism. We always talked about the most important thing, Family. We also talked about Bobby her bird and her unending
    love and devotion to Uncle Jim.

    You provided your mother with love and spirit, she was blessed to have you care for her.
    I hope you will come to my home to stay and visit. I will invite all of our cousins over for dinner and
    we will share stories of Uncle Jim and Aunt Audrey.

    Your mother will be missed, I hope to see you soon.
    Love
    Marian

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