Over the years, few people in my immediate family have shown an interest in ‘our’ family history. The genes come from my maternal grandfather’s side of the family on that score, for sure, with a few exceptions. During my visit to Australia earlier this year, my cousin (who shares 1/4 of my grandparents, rather than the ‘more usual’ 1/2) showed a vague interest, but our mutual grandmother was an Evans, a line which I have not done a huge amount of research on, although I have traced them back to the mid-late 1700s.
But somebody, many years ago, found an obituary for Frederick Day in Reigate in 1922. I am darned if I can remember who, but I know it wasn’t me or Mum! And a jolly interesting read it is too….
Frederick’s obituary goes on to talk about his performances on ‘cornet and tenor horn … [being] much above the average’. He was a coach builder by trade and took over the old-established business of the late Mr John Moody. However, he lost one of his sons in World War 1 and with his health deteriorating, he was forced to retire from the business.
The coffin was made of polished oak and bore the inscription: “Frederick Day, died April 19th, 1922, in his 73rd year – At Rest“. But the best was yet to come …. The list of mourners was vast and included relationships as well:
Mr and Mrs J. Buckland (son-in-law and daughter), Mr and Mrs H.W. Warren (son-in-law and daughter), Mr and Mrs W. T. Nash (son-in-law and daughter), Mr and Mrs A.E. Leppard (son-in-law and daughter), Mr and Mrs H.W. Whitmore (son-in-law and daughter), Miss Ethel Day (daughter), Mr and Mrs A.F. Day (son and daughter-in-law), Mr Walter Day (son), Mr Ralph Warren (grandson), Miss Elsie Warren and Miss Edith Buckland (granddaughters), Mr and Mrs A. Day (brother and sister-in-law), Mrs J. Silvey and Mrs Colling (sisters), Mr F. Barcombe (nephew), Messrs. John and James Bagwell (brothers-in-law) …..
Other relatives were also listed in the floral tributes including my g-g-grandparents (Albert, Lilly and family). A month or two ago, when we returned to my parent’s house, we photographed various pictures from the family album which were named and Frederick Day was one of them.
To have such a long obituary in the newspaper, Frederick Day must have been a well-respected member of the community. Maybe my musical abilities have been acquired genetically from the Day family line in some way?