DBF President, Lady Bader, dies

Joan Bader – 17/3/1918 – 18/12/2015 R.I.P.

Young Ma r

As you will know from our Facebook Page, our beloved DBF President, Joan Bader, died peacefully in her sleep just before Christmas, aged 97. She seemed indomitable and, until recently, we were fully expecting her to get her telegram from HM the Queen (I gather you have to apply for them now!), but sadly her health and quality of life had declined over the past couple of years.

We were delighted that, after a recent move from Somerset, she was able to end her days in Crosfield House, a wonderful care home in Rhayader, where she was surrounded by warmth, kindness, humour and true caring.

Her funeral took place in Aberystwyth at the most beautiful crematorium I have ever seen, with a gathering afterwards at the glorious Plas Nanteos, both places dear to her heart.

As well as the charity work she did with her late husband, Douglas Bader, she gained recognition in her own right for support of her own charities, including long-term work for Riding for the Disabled, for which she earned her O.B.E.

She was instrumental in founding the DBF when Douglas died more than 30 years ago and was a staunch supporter, accompanying the fund-raising Treks and Bike Rides all over the world even when walking on a disintegrating hip. Sir Douglas would have been proud! She was also a huge supporter of the Bader Cup, a fund-raising initiative started and run by the equally indomitable John Southwick and his late partner, Pat. She was a hugely popular presence at the Finals where her own knowledge and love of golf (once playing off a 2 Handicap) and gregarious and relaxed personality soon put the players at their ease.

M&D Golf Shot

There have been many obituaries for her but one of the best (despite the wrongful inclusion of a photograph of Douglas’s first wife, Thelma – our apologies to her family, we hope it didn’t cause any upset) was done by The Times, which you can read by clicking on the link. It will open (slowly, I’m afraid) as a pdf in a separate window.

The Foundation has some exciting projects planned in her memory (we feel sure she’d approve!) and details will be revealed in due course but, for now, please join us in saying goodbye to a remarkable woman.

Ma with Dogs