A thought for Linda Bear

Today was a hard day, saying goodbye to one of my closest and oldest friends…

Linda Jane Burr

8th October 1952 – 1st April 2019

She was the most thoughtful person I knew, she didn’t have a nasty bone in her body and wouldn’t hurt a fly.  I hear this phrase time and time again, but there’s only one person I think of when I hear it….her.

She was like a sister to me, an older wiser sister.  We would spend time talking about everything and anything, we shared a love for retail therapy (particularly of the handbag variety), cake and most importantly our love for the animals.

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Her funeral today was in perfect respect of her memory, set in the South Downs Natural Burial Site. The plot was deep in the woods, a considerably very steep walk but she would’ve loved it.  There were nearly thirty of us strolling down carrying her favourite deep purple tulips all of us thinking of our personal memories of her, and in that moment I hoped that she could see all these people that had turned up, all these friends that cared so much for her and loved her.  The carpet of the deep purple tulips  carried so much love and affection for the lady who had so much love in this world.

We all listened to Elvis’ How great thou art before Sarah the Celebrate spoke of Lindas life, and her gorgeous personality before she passed over to me to read my poem that I had wrote when she was in hospital, she loved it straight away and asked me if I would read for her funeral.

Linda you’re a legend and so so brave, for all that work saving animals you did unpaid.

If the animals could talk they would say thank you,
 they would say how unfair life has been for you.

You grabbed an opportunity when you hit your fifties,
becoming an animal worker that was always busy.

You wrote stories about animals the one thing you loved,
and giving them homes that fit like a glove.

You did many treks all over the Far East,
raising money for charities you were a trekking beast!

Then there was the time you and Romana jumped out of a plane, we were all so proud but still thought you were insane.

There are many of us here to class you as our friend,
a life of achievements and giving so much right to the end.

We are all so proud of you and what you done,
you really are our number one.

We love you Linda to the moon bear and back,
who will we pass stuff on for the odd brick a brack?

Who will we share the love for all stationery bits,
the coloured pens, pencils, paper and post it’s?

You’re the only friend who waved as you said bye bye, that special wave we will miss and as we look to the sky, thinking of all the memories of how thoughtful you were, you will be truly missed so much our Linda Jane Burr.


And as I let the tears roll down my face I felt a gust of wind blow through the forest and the sun shone predominantly on her coffin, it had felt like Linda was there enjoying the moment and that’s when John Lennons Imagine was played around the woods as a time for reflection, one of her favourite songs chosen by her when she sat in hospital deciding what she wanted for her funeral.

And as we said goodbye to Linda, Born Free by Matt Monro was played, which was the sound track to one of her favourite films Born Free.

I hope we did you justice Linda, I hope you got exactly what you wanted and what you deserved after you have loved and cared so much for each and every one of us that was invited to share the moment.

One day when William is old enough to understand I will tell him about his Auntie Linda and how much she did for the animals of this world, I will take him up to the woods where you’re buried where there will be a cherry tree and will sit and tell him how you jumped out of a plane for the Moonbears and how much you loved watching him and how sad it is that you won’t see him grow up, but I like to think you’ll be watching from above.

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I was so proud of you Linda and how much you’ve achieved, and it was so wrong that you were taken from us too early.  I hope that you’re able to now spend more time with Bow and maybe one day we’ll meet again.


If you would like to know more about Animals Asia and help raise money or donate please follow the link here.

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