Former Mayor of the Freetown City Council, Dr. June Matilda Bernice Holst-Roness has passed away in London on Thursday 14th February 2008. According to her sons who confirmed the sad news to Awareness Times, Mayor Holst-Roness, who was born on 10th June 1929, died peacefully in her sleep at 7:30pm last Thursday after suffering from a major stroke a few days before and from which she never recovered.
|Dr. June Holst-Roness in her Mayoral Robes
June had been showing signs of recovery from her last stroke suffered three years previously that led to her being moved to a nursing home, the Farmlane Hospital in London.
Born of Adjuah Spaine, the beautiful June studied medicine at Dundee & St Andrews in Scotland where she met her husband Rolv Holst-Roness, a Norwegian student who was also studying Dentistry. They got married in Scotland on the 29th December 1956 and both returned home to serve Sierra Leone where
June became one of the most prominent private doctors and was infact, the only female doctor to serve the then President of Sierra Leone - Siaka Probyn Stevens. She became the Mayor of Freetown from 1977 to 1980 succeeding the late Daniel Akibo Betts.
The hugely popular Dr. June Holst-Roness brought class and glamour to the office of the Mayor and was well known for her gorgeous hats which she would sport at State functions. Long after she had served her term as Mayor, she still commanded a formidable presence in the City of Freetown.
According to her children, June left Freetown in 1997 on a journey that was supposed to last only one week during which she was to meet her future daughter-in-law.
However, the AFRC Coup followed in that same week and left June stranded in the UK where she was now forced to reside. She fell ill a few years later and remained in the UK ever since.
The late woman is survived by her husband, Rolv Holst-Roness (74) also living in London. Children include Erik Holst-Roness (47), living in Geneva, Switzerland and Carl Holst-Roness (44) in UK.
Madam June Matilda Bernice Holst-Roness will be laid to rest on Saturday the 23rd of February 2008 in the United Kingdom. On that same day at 11am in the morning, her body will be laid at the St. Martin-in-the-Fields Church at the famous Trafalgar Square in London which was the church that June frequented and even served.
May her soul rest in perfect peace.
© Copyright by Awareness Times
Newspaper in Freetown, Sierra Leone.