Freddie Mercury’s mother dies aged 94
Freddie Mercury’s mother Jer Bulsara has died in her sleep aged 94, nearly 25 years after Freddie himself passed away.
Born in India in 1922, Jer and her husband Bomi fled with their two children Farrokh [Freddie] and Kashmira to Middelesex during the ‘64 Zanzibar Revolution.
After the move, Freddie went on to become one of the best loved artists in music history, selling approximately 300 million records as the frontman of Queen and performing iconic concerts such as 1985’s Live Aid. In a time when being LGBT was still taboo, Freddie kept the curious public guessing about his sexual preferences, but spent the later years of his life with partner Jim Hutton.
Throughout his career, his mother Jer was one of his greatest supporters. She was devout in her religion, and was a practicing Parsee – a faith that arrived in India from Persia in the 7th century and follows the prophet Zoroaster.
The Parsee faith believes in three tenets: good thoughts, good words and good deeds – teachings she and Bomi instilled in Freddie from a young age.
She told the Telegraph in 2012: “It was a very sad day when [Freddie] died in November 1991, but according to our religion when it is the right time you cannot change it. You have to go.
“God loved him more and wanted him with Him and that is what I keep in my mind. No mother wants to see her son die, but, at the same time, he has done more for the world in his short life than many people could do in 100 years.”
On his often flamboyant outfits and stage persona, she said: “I often told him I didn’t like his clothes and dresses, and tried to get him to cut his hair, but he would explain it was something you have to do when you are in the pop world and gradually I learnt to accept it.
“Whatever he did or wore I always saw in him the same child I knew, he would tell us lots of jokes and I could always connect with him.”
In the wake of his death of AIDS-related pneumonia in 1991, Jer missed Freddie so much that she and husband Bomi moved from their home in Feltham to Nottingham, to be closer to her grandchildren. Bomi later passed away in 2003.
Freddie’s fellow Queen band member Brian May posted a heartfelt tribute to Jer on his website, admiring the “warm and devoted Mum” who “like Freddie always had a strong twinkle in the eye.”
He recalled visiting Freddie’s parents in Feltham and the “busy Mum, full of life and optimism” who was “ferociously proud of her children.”
Although Freddie’s father’s commitment to the Parsee faith prevented him from entirely condoning his son’s career and lifestyle choices, Jer would always go to see the band play locally and support them.
The remaining members of Queen consulted Jer on musical projects after Freddie’s death and maintained a strong relationship with her.