WHY I WON’T GRIEVE FOR DAD
Tearful Tara, 22, says she may not go to father’s funeral
FREDDIE Starr’s daughter is so ashamed at having him for a father she may not even go to his funeral, she revealed last night.
Tara Coleman-Starr, 22, wept as she told how the comic superstar – who died of a heart attack at 76 on Thursday – was a selfish brute who:
PUNCHED her pregnant mum in the stomach and demanded she have an abortion.
WALKED OUT on her when she was just a six-month-old baby.
Came back in to her life – only to call her a SPITEFUL girl who deserved “the world’s biggest slap”.
TERRIFIED her so much she locked herself in a bathroom as he warned her: “You can run but you can’t hide.”
And left her so TRAUMATISED she needed therapy from the age of 14.
Tara told the Sunday Mirror she can’t grieve for him and said: “No one wants to believe their dad is an evil, manipulative man. He never gave me a birthday present or Christmas card. He never tried to be a father.
“I don’t think he’s capable of love. I’m embarrassed to be his daughter.”
Tara, one of Freddie’s six children, has spoken out just days after the comedian was found dead at his flat in Spain’s Costa del Sol, on Thursday following a heart attack.
Once the nation’s favourite TV entertainer earning £2million a year, he died bloated, penniless and alone.
Tara said: “As a performer he was amazing. I understand why people loved him. But that was a persona.
“He was two different people. On stage funny and a great comedian – off stage, selfish and violent. Me and my mum saw the real person.”
Freddie met Tara’s mother Trudy Coleman in 1994 when she was a TV production manager.
He proposed while divorcing second wife Sandy – mum of three of his children.
His cheating had already cost his 12-year marriage to first wife Betty Simpson.
In 1998 Trudy became pregnant. But Tara said: “He punched my mum in the stomach and told her he was going to leave her if she didn’t abort me.
“He didn’t want competition for mum’s affection.”
Family snaps show Freddie doting over Tara on holiday, but he was soon cheating – with shop assistant
Donna Smith, 27 years his junior. “He showed me interest as a baby and played happy families. But he quickly got bored,” Tara said.
“Mum found out he was cheating on her with Donna.
“She had a lightbulb moment and felt she didn’t want to put me through what she had gone through. He turned around and told her he wanted nothing to do with me. He was so aggressive she was scared I was in danger, so she packed up her bags and left.”
Sad Tara added: “I always thought it was my fault he’d left. I could never understand why he didn’t want me. That’s very tough for a little girl.”
Eight years later the comic – now married and divorced from Donna – re-appeared. Tara recalled: “After picking me up from school, mum said, ‘You’ll never guess who’s waiting for you at home.’ I said, ‘It’s my dad.’ I just had this feeling.
“I remember walking into his house and he was there.
“I didn’t know how to feel because I had so many questions and he was happy to see me and he was smiling.
“He sat me on his lap and said how sorry he was and how much he missed me. But he was only trying to use me to get back together with mum.
“When she made it clear that wasn’t going to happen, he stopped and showed his true colours.
“He had brought a CD of him singing for me to listen to. I asked him to play in the garden first. He got very aggressive and nasty.
“He said mum had done an awful job bringing me up and I was a nasty little girl. He said if he’d been around I’d have turned out better. Then he drove off. It was awful.”
Dog groomer Tara, who lives with
her mum in Solihull, West Mids, didn’t see Starr for another six years.
When she was 13 the millionaire took her to a local Burger King, then stayed around for six weeks.
In a phone call his rage re-emerged. “I tried to joke with him and told him to shut up over the phone in a playful way.
“He slammed the phone down and called me back shouting. He told me how dare I tell him to shut up. He said I was spiteful and said: ‘If I’d been there I would have given you the world’s biggest slap.’” Another time he was so aggressive Tara was left cowering in the bathroom.
“It was just me and him in the house and he was mad about something,” Tara said. “I knew he used to beat mum. I was scared as I knew what he was capable of. So I locked myself in the bathroom.
“I’ll never forget what he said, ‘You can run but you can’t hide’. It was so scary. Then he got in his car and left. Those words haunt me.” The last time Tara saw Freddie she was 15 and he was married to Sophie Lea – who later divorced him over claims he gave her a black eye.
“He was watching Jeremy Kyle,” she said. “I’d gone round to see him at Sophie’s house but he wouldn’t even look at me. “I got a text message and he went mad. “He said how dare I go on my phone and followed me into the kitchen yelling. Sophie held him back. He told me to leave so I did. I never saw him again.”
Today, despite therapy, Tara still suffers from Starr’s mental and emotional abuse. “I have no self-confidence because he constantly told me I was bad,” she said.
“I thought he loved me but it turned out he was just trying to get with my mum. I don’t think he ever loved anyone.”
Tara said she was “numb” when she found out about her father’s death in a text from a friend.
“I didn’t know how to feel,” she revealed. “This man was awful 95 per cent of my life but five per cent of it we had a laugh.
“He’s still my dad so there’s a lot of sadness. Now I’ll never get closure.
“He’ll never be able to say I’m sorry. Freddie, who was brought up in a children’s home in Liverpool, was estranged from all his wives and his six children. But Tara still feels pity.
She said: “He was a product of his environment. He was abused. That’s why he was so aggressive to women. I think he had something wrong with him.”
She added: “If there was a funeral it would be a very tough call whether to go.” Now she has one wish.
She said: “I don’t know my half-siblings because of him. I just wish his death brings us together.”
STARRSTRUCK Trudy & Freddie in 90s
HEARTBREAK Tara ColemanStarr weaps yesterday as she recalls her father, Freddie
EARLY DAYS Freddie w ith baby Tara – but he was soon to walk out on her
HITLER SKETCH Freddie at the height of TV career