FREDDIE MERCURY and Mary Austin shared an unbreakable bond created in the early days they were together and he never forgot what she did for him.
Everyone knows that Freddie called Mary Austin the “love of my life. ” He even wrote a song about it. But why was their bond so special? And why did it endure decades after they had split up and Freddie accepted he preferred to be with men? Their relationship was built on unshakable love, devotion and trust. In fact, from the very earliest days, Mary demonstrated why Freddie could rely on her above all others.
In a new documentary about the Queen singer, Freddie Mercury: A Christmas Story, on Channel 5, those that knew Freddie best talked about their friend and his love for Mary.
Peter Freestone was Freddie’s live-in PA for the last 13 years of his life. He said: “She (Mary) was incredibly important. Don’t forget, she looked after him for the first years when he wasn’t making a penny and Mary was working.
So she paid the rent, she paid for everything when they were living together from 1969.”
Actor and friend Yasmine Pettigrew said “They were very much a pair. He watched over her as well. He always wanted to know, if he was with Mary, that Mary was OK.
“She stuck by him and he stuck by her.
“You put your life in your hands if you tried to come between them, that’s for sure. Everyone knew that. They had a bond which people who are together forever have.”
Mary was the one person wh Freddie knew he could absolutely trust and rely on throughout his life, especially once he became rich and famous. She remained at the heart of his inner circle through the good times and, crucially, when he became ill.
Freddie said: “I might have all the problems in the world, but I have Mary and that gets me through… I still see her every day and I am fond of her now as I have ever been.”
As well as remaining the dearest of friends, Mary was registered as the company secretary for Freddie’s estate and his business. She handled all his staff and payments and, of course, Freddie left her the bulk of his fortune and his home in his will.
And when Freddie’s AIDS starting to take a terrible toll on his health, Mary was there.
Together with Freddie’s partner Jim Hutton, Peter Freestone and Freddie’s ex-boyfriend Joe Fanelli, she was one of the few people who were permitted to be with Freddie every day, caring for him in his final months.
Friend and journalist David Wigg said: “She used to sit with him for six hours… He asked whether she’d put on a video of a concert he’d done. At the end of it, he turned to her and said, ‘I was handsome then, wasn’t I?’ and she’d say, ‘You’re still handsome now.’ It was very touching. Very sad.”
Freddie once said; “There have only been two individuals who have given back as much love to me as I gave to them: Mary, with whom I had a long affair, and our cat, Jerry.
“My bond with Mary seems to grow and grow…
“I’ll love her until I draw my last breath.”
And he did.