Tribute to Gena Coull

This eulogy was delivered by Bobbie Stewart on Thursday 19th April 2018.

Georgina Milton Munro Stewart was born on the 5th February 1934 – the eldest daughter in a family of ten children. She remembered her early years as being mostly playful and happy, however, being the eldest daughter, household chores inevitably came her way – leaving her feeling a bit like Cinderella sometimes.

Although Gena enjoyed her school years – leaving school and finding employment ended her Cinderella complex. She held a number of positions as a Silver Service Waitress before joining the staff at “Louis” Fish & Chip Restaurant.

It was amongst their frequent customers that Gena discovered her very own Prince Charming – Charles. Romance swiftly blossomed and, swept off her feet, she & Charles married in March 1951.

In little over a year, their daughter Easter was born – followed by Charles then Ally, with Joyce bringing up the rear to complete their family.

Although Charles working away at sea meant Gena had her hands full, bringing up the bairns – she still had time for a number of jobs to help make ends meet. The most memorable job, being that of an Usherette in the Buckie Playhouse – firm but fair, she took no nonsense and the words “ Sshhh, here comes the wifey wi the bun” were often heard at the Saturday Children’s Matinee. Gena could turn her hand to anything –  tapestries and embroidery were no problem. When the bairns were young she knitted their jumpers and made the girls dresses – although at the time, Easter and Joyce would much rather have had one off the peg!

In the 60’s, Gena was fond of Country Music – in particular, Jim Reeves. Her constant rendering of his music, sadly led to the bairns becoming fluent in almost every song!!

Ill health dogged Gena and, amongst other ailments, she was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in the late 70’s. Although Gena was in a wheelchair for a time, it never held her back and she took an active role within the local MS Society – even participating in Archery and Air Rifle shooting! A combination of improved medication and a couple of mishaps with the chair – finally saw Gena cast it aside for a Zimmer Frame – a mode of transport she became comfortable with and future generations of children enjoyed playing with!

Her four bairns eventually married and Gena was blessed with the arrival of a number of Grand and Great Grand Children – all of whom affectionately knew her as “Panny”.

Gena and Charles moved house a number of times in their married life, finally coming to rest in the Hanover Housing Complex at Burnside Court in Buckpool, where while able, Gena was an active participant in residents committees and frequent outings.

In recent years, her health continued to deteriorate and Gena finally succumbed to its toll – passing away on Monday.

Gena led a full and happy life, marred only by illness. She is at rest now, but will be sadly missed by all who have known and loved her.

These are a few words that Charles thought appropriate, entitled:

WHILE WE’RE APART

It’s not easy for us, while distance separates us.

As each day passes into another, we must look forward to tomorrow,

knowing that we are one day closer to the dreams we hold.

It may be frustrating when we need a hug or want each other’s company,

but if we feel alone, we should close our eyes and remember a moment in time, when we held one another.