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In 1991, my husband John and I took one of our many vacations to the U.K. and Wales, after having lived in both England, and briefly, Wales, in earlier years. That year we encouraged my mother, Enid, to join us as we explored ancestral or genealogy spots throughout the U.K. Mother was seventy-five then and traveled from Vancouver to England to join us.

My mother's family was from both the Glamorgan area on one side, and Dyfed on the other, and I had spent many years as a local historian/genealogist tracing our family roots. The family came from the parish of St. Edrens in Dyfed, near Letterston. The farm, Walterson farm, and quite prosperous, and the church of St. Edrens still stands, no longer a church, but rather a private home. The churchyard is noted in various history texts, and now online, as having both long grass that cured rabies and mystical snakes.

The classic Welsh warm welcome...

We were welcomed in the area, and went to the church-home to take pictures; locals invited us to talk to a rather elderly gentleman at the farm one over who had, they said, a fabulous mind and interest in the local history of the area.

We found him, and I chatted him up about local history. My mother patiently waited. He was quite roughshod, nearly toothless, and possibly a local sage, as he said he knew our family name (Waters), even though our folk had long left the area, told us one thing about St. Edrens and area that was of great interest. He said that when anyone from the area died, a 'coach and four' was heard in the area, presumably taking the departed away and just before we arrived it had been heard again!

I thought that rather amusing. When we left the next day for another stop in the Glamorgan area, we called back home to our children in Canada, just to check up on things. We were told, in a rather desperate tone, that mother's older brother (her only sibling) had died yesterday, in Calgary Alberta,

I asked when he died. In figuring out the time differences between Wales and Alberta Canada, I found that my uncle, who had never been to Wales to find his ancestral home, had died the very hour and time we were talking to the farmer next to St. Edrens.

Coincidence? Yes, of course. We heard no 'coach and four' but found it eerie to know that when I am making actual contact with the local historian about local death legends, as descendants of the area, that my uncle would die at that very moment.

Well, that's the story, I hope to go back to Llanina , I might just get a glimpse of one of those ghostly visions!

Gail Benjafield - Canada

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