Teresa-Louise Fersen

Teresa-Louise Fersen (1926 - ?)

Teresa-Louise was to become the ‘matriarch’ of the Fersen family. She was the driving force behind building an international business with her son Michael, as well as an invaluable mentor and a source of finance both for him and her grandchildren.  Sixteen years younger than her husband John, she adored him and yet tolerated the number of female admirers he attracted even into his sixties. She always knew he would never leave her, and she felt a sense of pride that he belonged to her, loving him right up to his death in 1988. 

Teresa-Louise came from a wealthy family, but John had not married her for money – theirs was a true love match, and she forgave him everything, even after the news broke about Sarah’s pregnancy. She saw something of herself in Sarah, and she welcomed her with open arms when they first met, delighted that here there was someone who might be a more relaxing influence on her own son.

But she had reckoned without Michael’s stubborn attitude when he thought he was right. Not a man to admit to getting anything wrong, even when the evidence was put in front of him, Teresa-Louise had to acknowledge that her own son was just as much to blame for the unexpected closeness that grew between John and Sarah.

She tried to keep the relationship with Sarah as normal as possible after the news broke, attempting to act as an intermediary between father, son and daughter-in-law – and thus often making herself unpopular with each. It was Teresa-Louise who eventually had to take control of the situation, and insist that ‘normal’ life be the aim for everybody, as it would be unfair otherwise on both Edward and the unborn child.

As time passed, she felt more and more drawn to the latest addition to the family, and was constantly on call for her while Sarah was ill after the birth. A bond developed, which Sarah could not help noticing, and unintentionally Teresa-Louise began to shut out Sarah Fersen from her own daughter’s life. After her mother’s death, it was only natural that Chrissie moved in to live with Teresa-Louise and John – a situation that was to be repeated later in her life.

Teresa-Louise never met her father-in-law, and only knew from her husband that the family was of Scottish descent, and had changed the name from MacPherson. John had never mentioned anything to her directly about any connection with a murder in the family, but before he died he did leave a box of papers and photographs relating to his family for Teresa-Louise to pass on to the grandchildren when the time came. He had made one other bequest: she was NOT to give it to Michael under any circumstances. She opened the box a few months after John died and examined the contents – then the box had been left with the family attorney, Vernon Longshaw.

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