Miss Winifred “Freda” Neatby

Winifred "Freda" Neatby (1885 - 1958) was from England but prior to her trip aboard Lusitania was visiting relatives in Canada for about a year.  She was engaged when she boarded the ship.  While the ship was sinking she stopped to help an old lady.  The old woman told Winifred to save herself as Winifred was still young and the old lady had already lived her life.  Winifred survived the sinking of the Lusitania and decided to break off her engagement. Winifred was born on 24 June 1885 in Hampstead, North West London to Edwin Awdas Neatby and Winifred Neatby.  Edwin was a doctor and surgeon with an office in London.  The 1901 Census listed the family as living in Hampstead and Winifred 15 years old.  Winifred's mother died in 1908 and her father remarried to Mary Ruth Jones in 1910. The Neatbys moved to East Grinstead, East Sussex while Edwin continued to work in London. Winifred went to visit relatives in Canada in 1914, where she spent time with relatives Ada and Andrew Neatby in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.  Most of the year she spent with her second cousin Edith and her husband Oscar Hedlin, and Edith's sister Kate Nicholl.  During this time Winifred met Oscar's brother Frans and the two became engaged. Winifred booked her return to England aboard Lusitania.  When the ship was sinking, as Winifred was making her way to the boat deck, she saw an old woman struggling to climb the stairs.  Winifred stopped to help her, but the woman told Winifred to keep going.  The old woman told Winifred to save herself as Winifred was still young and the old lady had already lived her life.  Winifred found her way into a lifeboat and was saved.  After the sinking, Winifred decided to break off her engagement. Winifred's father Edwin died in 1933 in East Grinstead.  Her sister Marion, who never married, died on 15 August 1945 in Somerset.  Winifred became executrix of the estate with her cousin Sarah Margaret Cox.  Marion bequeathed her personal belongings to Winifred and the estate was put in trust so that Winifred would be provided with income for the rest of her life. Winifred's stepmother Mary died in 1949, and Winifred stayed at the family home.  The estate was divided equally between Winifred and Mary's nephews Alan Wilson Jones and Anthony Wilson Jones.   Winifred died on 7 May 1958, 43 years to the day of the sinking of the Lusitania, in the Homeopathic Hospital in Tunbridge Wells.  She was 72.  Winifred is buried in the Neatby family grave in Kensal Green Cemetery.

Links of Interest

Winifred "Freda" NEATBY ~ 1885 - 1958 (now offline)
Contributors: Michael Haslam Michael Poirier References: Haslam, Michael.  "Winifred 'Freda' NEATBY ~ 1885 - 1958," NEATBY: One Name Study.  Online.  <http://www.compulink.co.uk/~mrhaslam/neatby/people/07/0781.html>.

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