Denton a village in South Norfolk, England

Rae Stribling 1961 - 2021

From the Parish News – January 2022.

Rae Stribling, 7th October 1961 - 8th November 2021.

Alan and Rae came to live in Denton in 1989, having fallen in love while working together at Bernard Matthews. Rae was not too happy with the place for a start, having moved from the town of Southwold; after all there were shops round the corner and a pub down the road. Who would want to live in an out of the way rural place like Denton? However, she would put up with it for a while and the pair were married the following year. Whether it was Rae who charmed the village or vice-versa, 32 years later there was definitely a loving relationship between her and the Denton community and she certainly did not want to move. The large congregation at St. Mary's Church for the service celebrating her life, which was conducted by the Rector, the Rev. Chris Hutton, who also read the eulogy, and the testimonials from many of the Denton parishioners which were put together and read by David Godsmark, summed up this relationship perfectly.

Rae was born in Wrentham to Derek and Maleena Palmer; the family moved to Southwold when she was three years old. She enjoyed growing up in the bustling town and became involved in many of the town activities including ringing the bells at Southwold Church. She would also go fruit picking at the surrounding farms. She had a distinct love of animals and her brother Andy told that she had a pet chicken which she carried around under her arm, even when visiting the local pub! On leaving school Rae wanted to follow her brother Andy into a career in the Navy but a problem with her eyesight prevented this. So she took a secretarial course before joining Bernard Matthews where she worked for 13 years. She was very proud of the fact that she never missed a day off work.

After settling in to married life Alan and Rae started their family and their three daughters were born, Sadie, Zoe and Nicole. Alan continued with his job, cycling into Hopton through almost any weather to help produce the “Bootiful Turkeys”. Rae began to take an interest in the village activities; she became caretaker at the Village Hall, and a member of the founding committee of the Alburgh with Denton Pre-school. Eventually she became Postmistress at the Post-office held on Thursdays at the Chapel. She performed this role for the last 12 years.

Meanwhile, apart from caring for her three daughters, she started taking on a caring role for other people who needed help in the village. There are many elderly people in the village whose lives were brightened by her cheery smile and greeting as she called. Whether it was for a personal visit or just to have a quick clean and tidy up, she was always reliable and punctual. It was this dependability that persisted even when she was suffering and battling with the chemotherapy treatment for the cancer that eventually took her. She would never complain and always made light of her problems.

Rae's daughter Zoe wrote for the family in her eulogy “My Mum was the most kind and selfless person I knew; always putting everyone else before herself no matter what. She made sure my sisters and I had everything we needed and wanted. It was the little behind the scenes things she did that made her such a special Mum. As an adult, Mum became my best advisor, supporting me through many hard decisions and always helping find the best solution. She was always there to carry me with her strength and comfort. I am so grateful for the time we had together; she has left me with many happy memories that I will cherish for the rest of my life." This sums up her character and perfectly reflects her personality.

Our sympathies and condolences go out to her loving husband Alan and devoted daughters Sadie, Zoe and Nicole, with all her family and friends, to whom she will ever be remembered as “Their Rae of Sunshine”.

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