Cynthia Marguerite Baker 1916 – 2013

A service of thanksgiving for the life of Cynthia Baker – known for almost all of her life as “Bunny” –was held at Foxearth Church on 16th April. Bunny died on 30th March in St Joseph’s Care Home where she had lived for the last 6 years. The service was conducted by Canon Gregory Webb who spoke of Bunny’s clear-sighted faith and of the many conversations he had enjoyed with her since her move to Sudbury. Together with members of her family, many neighbours and friends from the villages and area were present to pay their respects to a memorable lady whose kindness, her care for others and her valuable contributions to community life are a lasting legacy .

Speaking of the Foxearth years, Amanda Stockley recalled her parents arrival in 1977 where they were immediately absorbed into village activities which they staunchly supported. They served on the Parochial Church Council for many years, Butch – the other half of the partnership – being a much loved Reader. The Annual Church Fete, the Over 60s Christmas lunch, the Womens’ Institute and all sorts of ad hoc events all benefitted from their enthusiastic help. Butch and Bunny were keen bridge players and made many friends at the Clare and Lavenham clubs. They were welcoming hosts when occasionally theological students from Westcott House, Cambridge were here on weekend attachments. After her husband’s death in 1992 Bunny continued to live in Foxearth caring for her garden , still taking an active part in the life around her and watching her grandchildren grow. It was a sadness to her that as she grew older she became more dependent on others and could no longer wear the nice shoes that typified her ever-smart appearance and bearing.

Of her mother’s early life, Tessa Lydekker described childhood in Leicestershire following country pursuits and her particular love of animals; she acquired her enduring nickname from her beloved Angora rabbits. Bunny developed a passion for flowers and an extensive knowledge of their names: she created a garden wherever she lived and this often involved hard labour! During the war Bunny served in the WAAF as a driver delivering bombs in the blackout and at this time a sense of duty, which she displayed for the whole of her life, shone through. In 1944 she met and married Butch – a much decorated pilot.  Bunny was a fine needle-woman and knitter making baby clothes and woollies and her home-made preserves were much sought after. Her philosophy that if something was worth doing it was worth doing properly was vigorously applied. Bunny enjoyed organising – and going to – parties. She had a lovely singing voice which an early career as a smoker temporarily affected.

Readings were contributed by grandchildren Kate and Sam and after the service Bunny was laid to rest alongside Butch in the churchyard.

On a sunny, spring afternoon, in flower-filled church that Bunny had specifically requested and with words of warmth and affection, we were reminded of a long and busy life that touched and impressed so many of us. Tributes and reminiscing continued over refreshment at Devonshire House, Cavendish at the kind invitation of Bunny’s family  to whom we offer our sincere condolences and good wishes..

Ken Nice.

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