• Categories: 20th Century, 21st Century
Rebaandgary

Gary Younge with his mother Reba.

Reba Younge came to Stevenage from Barbados as a nurse and retrained as a teacher. She ran a support group for Asian women and became a foster mother, raising two children in addition to her own three sons, one of whom is the award-wining writer and journalist Gary Younge. She also taught at a Stevenage secondary school where she was regarded with great admiration by former pupils:

“…amazing inspirational teacher who fostered disadvantaged kids. One of the few teachers I remember with affection…I knew her from my time at Bedwell school from 1975 – an amazing larger than life character…” Helen Hinton

“…she was an amazing maths teacher, generous with her time to help kids like me who struggled with maths” Jilly

*I lived next door to Reba when I was a young girl. Some evenings I would go in to visit her with my mum. Often there would be 3 little boys asleep on the floor with their noses in a book. My mum use to say to Reba “Aw, why don’t you put them to bed?” To which she would reply “No, when they wake up they will carry on reading”. She certainly knew what she was doing as those 3 little boys grew up to be outstanding young men who have all achieved so much. Reba was an inspiration to all those who knew and loved her and to all the youngsters that were lucky enough to have crossed her path. Her memories live on forever in all of us.”
Kathy Bates

 

Read this beautiful epitaph by Gary Younge about his mother Reba https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/dec/31/lessons-learned-about-life-mothers-early-death