Thanksgiving service in honour of late town planner
Family, friends and well-wishers braved torrential downpours to say farewell to the late Leonard Earl St Hill, the former chief town planner who died two weeks ago, aged 86.
The St Lucian-born civil engineer had taken ill while attending a meeting and subsequently died at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
Based on the outpouring of tributes today at a service of thanksgiving held at the James Street Methodist Church, it was evident that St Hill had left a lasting mark through his professionalism, integrity and dedication.
In delivering the eulogy, his eldest son Nigel St Hill painted a vivid picture of his father as a man of high ideals.
“Lennie’s life is a cliché of nobility, integrity, intellect, high ideals and excellence. He was his own hard taskmaster. The irony is that he lived a great ideal of family, if small, and community, if great, that led him to walk his life and most especially his final years with only hope for company,” Nigel said.
He also depicted his father as a man who was born to be in public life and embraced it, and had a professional career that was “distinguished by a selfless dedication” and integrity.
St Hill was trained as an engineer at Mount Allison University in New Brunswick, Canada, where he was a navy cadet and Canadian universities champion debater. He received his training in town planning in Liverpool in the United Kingdom, served in Lagos, Nigeria, and was St Lucia’s chief engineer, before coming here to serve chief town planner.
“His instinct for public service saw him reach the highest ranks in the masonic lodge, serve as president of the Barbados Chamber of Commerce, lay preacher in the Methodist church and sometimes a radio commentator in the brief golden years of West Indies Cricket,” Nigel said.
The officiating minister Reverend Robert Quintyne also highlighted St Hill’s dedication to the church, and urged those in attendance to cling to the belief that death was not the final stage of the journey.
St Hill was to be accorded a private burial.