Elfrida Dora Maria (Ella) BURMESTER 
- Born: 8 Jan 1881, Somerset East Eastern Cape SA
- Marriage (1): Walter FRYER  on 29 Jan 1906 in St Augustine Doornfontein South Africa
- Died: 9 Apr 1978, Bournemouth HAM aged 97
- Crem.: Bournemouth Crematorium
Another name for Elfrida was Ella.
Ella was of German/Danish ancestry, she was educated in South Africa, England and Germany where she studied music at the Conservatoire in Berlin. She had wealthy family in Germany and lacked for nothing.
Ella and her brothers and sisters had a Governess, Miss Statham, a strict martinet from England. Later there was a Miss Black, who was a great favourite. The family moved to Bloemfontein, and Ella went to St Michael's Home a very good school run by nuns, her interest in music was aroused here. Then at age 16 she left for schooling in Europe.
About 1904 she returned to South Africa and taught music in Johannesburg, where she met her future husband who was teaching in Johannesburg and known to her family.
In 1906 she and Walter married in a simple ceremony before a large gathering of family and friends. Ella wore a trained gown of rich white brocade, the skirt falling in pleats at the hem of the skirt, above which was the most beautiful hand embroidery of silk flowers outlined with gold thread and her bouquet was composed of lilies roses and myrtle. They honeymooned at the coastal resort Amanzimtot south of Durban, returning to Johannesburg she continued teaching until the birth of her son Dennis in 1907.
Then came WWI, Walter enlisted and she and her family coped with life and the constant fear of losing a husband.
After the War the family reunited in Tanganyika where she loyally and industriously supported her husband and his work, and raised her family, often in difficult unhealthy conditions. She sometimes went on safari with Walter around his District, at times taking her family, she spurned the option of being carried by porters and walked beside her husband, often all day, out for as long as a week.
When Walter retired to Kenya decisions were taken that proved disasterous for the financial security of the family and Ella was left at Walter's death without means and dependant on her family. She first went to live in Zimbabwe with her eldest daughter Doreen and her family until Doreens death in 1962, then to her daughter Shirley in Tanganyika and ocassionally her daughter Phyllys. Shirley and her husband Robbie then took Ella to England until her death aged 97 in 1978.
Ella was a greatly talented woman a musician, a singer, a painter, she did beautiful embriodery, had informed often strong views on many subjects, she took an interest in her appearance and stayed fit and agile until the end of her life.
Ella lived live to the full through good times and bad.
Ref: Wind Sun & Earth Remain - J.A. O'Toole 2016
Images Courtesy Alec Wight & Jenny O''Toole nee Hill - 2019
Elfrida married Walter FRYER  [MRIN: 3638], son of William FRYER  and Emma Ann KENNA , on 29 Jan 1906 in St Augustine Doornfontein South Africa. (Walter FRYER  was born on 27 Jul 1879 in Dublin Ireland, died on 27 Apr 1947 in Kisumu Kenya and was buried in Kisumu Kenya.)