Anita Lord with her husband, Jeff Jeverso. He and Anita were knocked off their moped in Brazil last month. Anita died in the accident and Jeff was seriously injured.
Anita Lord with her husband, Jeff Jeverso. He and Anita were knocked off their moped in Brazil last month. Anita died in the accident and Jeff was seriously injured.

Sad goodbye to true saint

TODAY, more than two weeks after her tragic death in Brazil, the Lord family will farewell their beloved “Neetie” at a funeral in the Minnie Water hall.

For the family of Anita Louise Lord, it’s a loss they are struggling to come to grips with, a feeling her sister, Ashley, conveyed.

“My sister was basically a saint,” she said.

“For anything like this to happen, she was the last person you would think it could happen to.

“She was always trying to do what was right. She never did the wrong thing.

“She had all through school, she was highly regarded and everyone who met her, loved her.”

A moped accident on January 29 robbed the Lord family and her many friends of their “Neetie”.

Ashley said Anita and her husband of only a few months, Jeff Jeverso, were travelling to Anita’s first Portuguese lesson on their moped when a car overtook them, then performed a U-turn.

“I don’t know if Anita hit the car. Jeff thought she must have hit the kerb,” Ashley said.

“Jeff told me that he went over to her and she was saying she couldn’t breathe. They were able to say they loved each other, then she passed. It was over very quickly.

“She must have broken her ribs and damaged her lungs, because she couldn’t breathe.”

What followed for the traumatised family was a nightmare as they battled Brazilian funeral directors and an Australian insurance company to get Anita’s body back to them.

“The hospital where they had Anita would not release her body until they had been paid,” Ashley said.

A wrangle with insurers AAMI over payment of travel insurance delayed the release of Anita’s body until late last week. And when AAMI relented after the story ran on television last week, there was further heartbreak for the Lords when they were told Anita was not on a flight back to Australia scheduled to arrive in Sydney on Thursday.

The distressed family called off the arrangements for her funeral planned for last Saturday, until further notice.

“We’ve just lost all trust in anything that they say. We won’t be announcing anything until we get her back,” Ashley said at the time.

“Most funerals are held three days after the death. It’s now more than 12 days after.

“It’s been very hard for all of us.”

For best friend Kerrie-Anne James, who graduated from Grafton High School in 2000 with Anita, the news of her death was a shattering blow.

“I was only talking to her a day-and-a-half before the accident,” she said.

“She was so happy, having this great experience. It’s all been taken away from us.

“There’s not enough words for me to say what I feel about Anita.

“She was my very best friend. She was just like a sister to me. We had this very strong connection.”

Ms James and another school friend of Anita’s, Nick Gleeson, have appealed for people to help out the family cover the expenses it has incurred over the past few weeks.

Mr Gleeson said people who wanted to donate money to help out could contact him on 0414 260 301.

Anita’s funeral will be held in the Minnie Water Community Hall, Sandon Road, Minnie Water, from 11am. A private cremation will follow.

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