Remembering my mum who passed away suddenly in July 14
Sons Graham, Alan and daughter Lesley, Grand children Abigail, Matthew, Oliver, Max, Isla and Iona
Joan was in born in Edgware, London on the 26th September 1942, the only daughter of Leslie and Annie Lake and lived in Kingsbury until the age of eight. In the early fifties, the family moved to the neighbourhood of Adeyfield in the new town of Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire. Here she made lifelong friends, some of whom include Celia, Barbara, Pauline, Jill and Irene and she kept regular contact with during her life.
Throughout her childhood she enjoyed dancing and was particularly good at tap and ballet, winning many awards. She also enjoyed sports and gymnastics and in fact she was able to demonstrate handstands to her granddaughters well into her forties.
After leaving school at 16, she worked in accounts departments at Addressograph Multigraph and later GEC.
In 1960 she met Brian Wright at a dance and soon after they got engaged. In 1962 they married at St Barnabas Church, Adeyfield and eighteen months later they had their 1st child Graham, followed by Alan and Lesley.
Whilst bringing up the family, there was always a houseful of children and friends, but somehow the home remained spotless, something she prided herself on throughout her life.
In the seventies Joan worked full-time in the offices of W H Lavers Wood Yard and was very highly thought of by all. In 1981 Brian suffered a brain injury during an operation and from that moment onwards Joan’s life changed course dramatically. With a teenage family to bring up and a husband in hospital, Joan showed resilience and tenacity to get through the dark times. Eventually Brian was allowed home after six months, where she then became his main carer for the next thirty four years.
She also undertook the responsibility of righting the wrongs done to Brian, successfully suing two heath authorities after a ten year fight. Although it didn’t give back her husband of old, it did give them financial stability, allowing them to purchase their own home and have a reasonably comfortable life.
In the eighties, Joan took up Genealogy, mainly researching the Wright’s where she managed to trace back ten generations of the family to the late 16th century. During the research, she also found some members of the family who she regularly kept in contact with.
Her six grandchildren came along between 1990 to 2007 and in 2012 Brian and Joan celebrated their 50th Golden Wedding Anniversary.
In 1999, Joan and Brian decided to move to Thrapston, Northants where Graham and his family had relocated to a couple of years earlier. Here Joan mixed with the community, setting up a miniatures club, making all sorts of personalised shops and dolls houses. In 2005, Joan and Brian moved into their present home, where she spent many hours tending to her garden, a pastime she really enjoyed.
During the thirty plus years of caring for Brian, Joan showed a remarkable determination to ensure Brian received the medical attention he deserved, with him having been subsequently diagnosed with a pituitary tumour and further loss of sight and mobility, as well as two pulmonary embolisms. In fact shortly before her passing, she was still giving out instructions to ensure Brian received his medication – she was truly a remarkable, caring person.