Sunday 21 January 2018

Julia Wayland was a woman of remarkable positivity


The late Julia Wayland
The late Julia Wayland

Julia Wayland (née McGrath), who passed away peacefully aged 86 on March 4, was a woman of many talents, including growing some of the area's best strawberries.

She was a resident of the New Houghton in New Ross for the past three years.

Julia was born on February 15, 1931, to parents Mary Kate and Andy McGrath of Neville Street in New Ross and was the last surviving of four daughters. Her sister Mary had passed away very young aged 16, while her sisters Nellie and Bridie passed away in 2003 and 2008 respectively.

Julia worked for a time in London in a cake factory and worked in several jobs around New Ross including at Irish Driver Harris.

Julia married her soul mate, Ballykelly man Robert 'Bobby' Wayland in 1973. A happy and contented lady, who led a nice, simple life, Julia had a great love for the outdoors and loved pottering around in the garden and in the home. Julia and Bobby grew and sold strawberries locally in the summer time and prided themselves on their quality produce. Besides gardening, Julia loved to crochet, sew and read. She loved living in Ballykelly, in the countryside where she had lots of great neighbours and friends.

She kept in constant touch with her New Ross friends and relatives. Bobby and Julia were known to do gardening, farming and household chores for neighbours, always working as a team. Julia loved her sister Bridie's family in Dublin and through the years she savoured the occasional summer holiday there - although she was delighted to get back home to normality afterwards. She was a woman of routine and didn't like when things didn't run to plan. She was not one for going out socialising very often, instead she was happiest when at home watching TV, chatting, reading, housekeeping and having friends and neighbours visit for tea and some reminiscing. She was a witty, good humoured person, often being witty without intending to be. Julia suffered a severe stroke in 2013 and fought hard afterwards, recovering most of her abilities in Wexford General hospital and then in St John's Hospital in Enniscorthy for rehabilitation.

Unfortunately due to the length of time before being medically treated she never got back walking and did not regain use in her left arm, but that did not stop her and she renewed her love of reading while in the New Houghton. She always had a book in front of her and was content at the hospital where she received excellent care. Her family said it is so important that people are aware of the signs and symptoms of stroke and make themselves aware of the F.A.S.T sequence. This acronym stands for Facial drooping, Arm weakness, Speech difficulties and Time to call emergency services. 'The first few hours following a stroke are critical where medical intervention can make the greatest difference,' a family member said.

Julia was a woman of faith. She was always a positive and determined person. Whenever life presented a challenge she faced it head on. You could say part of her died with her Bobby in 2011, but she got on with things remarkably well. She lived for her grandson Calum who she loved to mind during stayovers, but in truth they minded each other. She had a long, healthy life up to her stroke, despite having an incident with a lawnmower some years back where she lost some fingers tips. She also broke her femur in a slip at home. But these incidents failed to keep her out of action for long due to her determination and positivity. Julia was a kind and supportive mother to Andrew and attended his marriage to Sonja Power late in 2016 where bouncing new grandson Cameron was christened. At the ceremony she told lots of people that she was contented to see her only son happily settle down with a lovely family. That had been her goal, along with seeing her grandchildren being born, growing and thriving. And with the wedding, Sonja's son Cian became her bonus grandson.

Julia was laid to rest alongside Bobby in Whitechurch Cemetery. She is survived by son Andrew; grandsons Calum, Cameron and Cian; daughter-in-law Sonja; nephew Joe; nieces Mary and Rita and extended family and friends.

May she rest in peace.

New Ross Standard

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