Final goodbye for cycling centenarian

14:04 20 May 2014

Billie Fleming passed away shortly after her 100th birthday.

Billie Fleming passed away shortly after her 100th birthday.

Archant

Billie Fleming passed away on Monday with her family by her side just a month after milestone birthday.

Billie when she cycled 39,000 miles around the UK.Billie when she cycled 39,000 miles around the UK.

A CENTENARIAN who cycled 30,000 miles around Great Britain in a year and inspired generations has died just a month after her 100th birthday.

Billie Fleming, wife of the late George Fleming, who was the first man to cycle 50 miles in less than two hours, celebrated the milestone birthday in April.

She passed away at North Devon District Hospital on Monday, May 12 with her family by her side but leaves behind her a legacy of ‘girl power’.

Her stepson Peter Samwell said Billie was an ‘amazing lady’ who was thrilled to have reached her 100th birthday and be featured in the North Devon Gazette.

He said: “Billie’s passing at the age of 100 after a short illness is a sad occasion for her family and friends but I am certain that Billie would not want people to mourn but instead to use her death as a source of inspiration to carry on cycling.

“For her, death is probably no more than a puncture in life’s cycling journey, and now she can be reunited with her beloved husband, my father, George Fleming who passed away in 1997.

“Fortunately Billie reached her goal of getting to 100 and she was so pleased to have been interviewed by Sarah at the North Devon Gazette about her 1938 world record of cycling 29,604 miles in one year.

“Just this morning I opened Billie’s mail and read a letter from a 41 year-old mum who took up road cycling last year.

“She said that to her, Billie was the original ‘Girl Power’ and how she has been inspired to clock up the miles this year.

“What better epitaph could Billie ask for than to have inspired future generations of cyclists?”

Arrangements for Billie’s funeral are still ongoing but Billie’s family has asked for donations to The Cornwall Leukaemia Trust in lieu of flowers.

Other News Stories

Yesterday, 11:53
Michael Kiwanuka.

Up-and-coming soul singer songwriter to top Croyde festival this June.

Read more
Yesterday, 10:07
The Burton Art Gallery

Burton Art Gallery will establish charitable organisation with £33,000 funding boost.

Read more
Yesterday, 09:06
Taking blood pressure

Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) will be running free heart screening events on Saturday and Sunday.

Read more
Yesterday, 08:14
Barnstaple teenager Katie Gammon had a double lung transplant in August last year.

Barnstaple teenager Katie Gammon, who had a double lung transplant in 2013, is once again fundraising for charities.

Read more
Yesterday, 08:10
Alison Hunt of North Devon Hospice and Bill Sanders of Pilton Church Hall were each presented with cheques for £900 by Hamish Patrick's brother, Gavin Patrick

Fundraising evening to remember Green Man Festival organiser helped to raise £1,800 for North Devon charities.

Read more
Yesterday, 08:07
The re-imagined garden is officially opened

Petroc students give gardens at Pilton House Residential Home in Barnstaple a makeover.

Read more

Local Weather

Sunny

Sunny

max temp: 7°C

min temp: 3°C

Most Read News

Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Subscribe to the paper
Competitions
North Devon Football League
Order Photos
Family notices
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Family Notices 24

Digital Edition

Image
Read the North Devon Gazette e-edition today E-edition



North Devon's trusted business finder