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Bahamas Government - Cabinet Office Press Statement 15 February 2011
Passing of Dr. Keva Bethel, C.M.G.
(Cabinet Office, Nassau, Bahamas) - My colleagues and I were deeply saddened to learn of the passing early this morning of Dr. Keva Bethel, CMG, President Emeritus and Scholar-in-Residence at the College of The Bahamas. Dr. Bethel, a warm, caring and generous woman, an extraordinary Bahamian, was dedicated to the education and advancement of all Bahamians, and to the promotion and preservation of our culture as well as to our overall national development.
Many thousands of Bahamian students benefitted from her enduring commitment and tireless service. Dr. Bethel began her professional life as a Spanish and French language teacher at the Government High School. Later, she became a lecturer of foreign languages at the College of The Bahamas.
Having pursued an advanced degree in educational administration, Keva rose to become Principal and then President of the College of The Bahamas, a position from which she retired in 1998, though she remained intimately involved in the life and development of the College up to the time of her recent illness.
Dr. Bethel was deeply committed to the advancement of education in our country. She served on and headed numerous committees formed to study and make recommendations to improve education at every level. She was intrepid and innovative in these tasks, which she undertook with great enthusiasm and generosity.
Similarly, she was a fixture on the cultural scene, and central to the development of an important Bahamian cultural family. The wife of a grand Bahamian composer and late Director of Culture, Clement Bethel and the mother of author, lecturer and former Director of Culture, Dr. Nicolette Bethel-Burrows, and music and cultural enthusiast Edward Bethel, Keva was
for many years a member of the Renaissance Singers with whom she serenaded Bahamian audiences most particularly during annual Christmas concerts.
Dr. Bethel lent her considerable experience and knowledge to a number of Bahamian institutions including Queen’s College, The Lyford Cay Foundation, Bahamas Supermarkets Limited, Safe Bahamas, Doctors Hospital, Cable Bahamas Ltd. and the Finance Corporation of the Bahamas Ltd.
Dr. Bethel was one of our truly great citizens: devoted, honest, loyal and steadfast. Her life’s accomplishments and her warm spirit are forever etched in the annals of our history and in the hearts of countless Bahamians.
On behalf of a grateful nation, I express gratitude for her life and extend condolences to her children, Dr. Nicolette Bethel-Burrows and Edward Bethel, her grandson, Jaxon Elijah Bethel, son-in-law, Philip Burrows, daughter-in-law, Tasha Honey-Bethel, and to her extended family.