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Audrey M. Reider

Birth Date: January 15, 1933
Death Date: November 3, 2017

A resident at the Sequoias Retirement Community in Portola Valley, California, Audrey Muriel Reider (nee Dwyer), 84, passed away suddenly on Friday, November 3rd at Stanford Hospital in Palo Alto, California.

Born on January 15, 1933 in the small, South Wales mining town of Bargoed to Eunice and Clifford (“Cliff”) Dwyer, Audrey grew up in, and always loved, the South Wales mining valleys. Her father worked as a colliery fitter and Audrey loved to reminisce about long walks over the mountains above the town with her father, dodging sheep and Welsh ponies running wild on the moors. She attended local schools and excelled academically. Audrey also loved school sports, including swimming and playing rounders and netball. After she moved to the United States she regaled anyone that would listen with stories of how baseball is just like rounders and basketball is just like netball !!!

Audrey was the first member of her family to attend college, graduating with a degree in history from Aberystwyth University in Wales. Audrey valued education highly, and worked as a teacher for the whole of her professional life, rising to the position of principal at Long Lane School, a small country school outside Derby in the England. When she moved to the Sequoias, Audrey attended every educational lecture she could find. To the very end, she loved learning.

After graduating college, Audrey moved to Birmingham, England to work at a department store, where she met her first husband, Anthony (“Tony”) Reilly. Together with their new family, Audrey and Tony stayed in the Midlands area of England and finally settled in Derby, where Audrey lived nearly 45 years. Along with the Welsh mining valleys, the Derbyshire Peak District was one of her favorite places. She loved to walk in the Derbyshire Dales and visit the historic homes and quaint tea rooms and pubs in the small villages dotting the area.

Audrey and Tony were divorced in 1976. Audrey survived her first husband, Tony, her second husband, Alan Reider, and a son by her first marriage, Christopher Reilly.

At the age of 77 Audrey made a big change, moving across the world from Derby to the Sequoias retirement community in Portola Valley, California, to be nearer her son and daughter-in-law. Audrey spent her last, happy seven years loving being close to family, the California weather, Bay Area attractions and great company at the Sequoias.

One of Audrey’s favorite things to do as a young girl was to attend the local cinemas in Bargoed with her mother, which began Audrey’s lifelong love of film and the cinema. Since 2012, Audrey has organized the Sequoias’ bi-monthly film presentations. She would personally review dozens of movies each month to pick just the right movie to show, and became quite the movie critic.

Audrey developed a new interest in cultural arts when she moved to the Bay Area. She had season tickets for the San Francisco Symphony and Ballet, became a member of the Palace of the Legion of Honor and attended numerous local musical events at Stanford, the West Bay Opera, the San Francisco Opera and the California Pops.

True to her English heritage, Audrey remained an avid gardener her whole life. She had a beautiful garden wherever she lived, and most recently she grew a gorgeous flower garden at the Sequoias. She was very proud of her garden but did confide more than once that it seemed like cheating to grow things in California, with its abundant sun and warmth as compared to the unpredictable English weather.

Audrey is survived by her son and daughter-in-law, Philip Reilly and Judith Hasko, both of Portola Valley, her cousin, Haydn Dwyer, of Abergavenny, Wales and by her special friend at the Sequoias, Kirt McCaleb.

Arrangements are incomplete at this time. Service details will be posted as soon as they become available.
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  1. Phil and Judy,
    Although separated by many miles from you here in Wales, our thoughts are very much with you both as you come to terms with your loss and also celebrate Audrey’s live. A very precious cousin.

  2. Some thoughts and memories of Audrey ...

    Written by: Margaret Smith

    Audrey was a good friend of mine, a long-distance friend as it turned out. Our friendship was founded in the library of the 450yr old Repton School in Derbyshire over twenty years ago where we were cataloguing the archives. We shared a common interest in history and the English language, and soon we realised we had much more in common, gradually cementing our friendship.

    Seven years ago we could not help but admire her tenacity and dogged determination when she successfully completed all the US immigration formalities in the course of pursuing her planned relocation from Derbyshire to California – and she was successful.

    It was always a pleasure to awake and find a perfectly composed email from Audrey. Being a keen gardener, she would sometimes send lovely photographs of her gardening activities – pictures which I found difficult to match, due to the quite different English climate. Her emails would also reflect her enthusiasm for her visits to concert halls and baseball games, and the carefully researched choices for the next film-showing for the ‘Sequoias Cinema Club’ were always passed on to me as recommended viewing.

    The world is full of interesting and clever people, but only some of them are special as well – Audrey was special and I will miss her.

    Margaret Smith

  3. Phil & Judy,
    We will miss Audrey, her outlook on life and her gardening tips! She was our favorite British grandmother! We are lucky to have many fond memories of her which we will cherish!

  4. Audrey was my very close friend for 42 years in Derby Uk.
    We were both teachers & also principals of schools here in Derby.
    We shared so many happenings in our lives I will miss her so much.
    For me the end of an era.
    Cynth xoxo

  5. I will always have such wonderful memories of Audrey, a lovely woman. Audrey was so special to our family; remembering the children around the holidays. She used to send us all kinds of interesting and thoughtful little gifts, and the kids were thrilled with the holiday “poppers” she introduced us to. It was as if we had known her our whole lives. The love we shared with her was genuine. I can still hear her pleasant voice with her accent…like when we shared phone calls at the holidays. So special to us.

    Another angel is watching over us now. Audrey touched us, we loved her. We will miss her.

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