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Sir Olva Georges Monument

Monday, April 19–Governor David Pearey expressed his excitement for the afternoon’s ceremony and saw it fitting that the contributions of Sir Olva Georges are being remembered. Hundreds gathered at the Sir Olva Georges Plaza on Sunday to witness the unveiling of the monument in honour of the Territory’s only recipient of knighthood from Her Majesty the Queen, Sir James Olva Georges.

“He was a multi-talented individual. He was a great sportsman, musician, organist, notable business man, statesman, and parliamentarian. He was truly a multitalented individual of a calibre that we all, certainly myself, aspire to achieve or attain or equalize but never quite do so. But a man through his inspirational work gives us hope that at least we can follow someway in his footsteps,” Governor Pearey said.

Premier O’Neal titled the afternoon’s proceedings as ‘Honouring the Past’ and called Sir Olva a hero who everyone should emulate.

“Today may be summed up as ‘Honouring the Past’ and so it is, as we pay tribute and thank God for the life and work of the late Sir James Olva Georges. Sir Olva is a national hero and the unveiling of a monument this afternoon is a clear indication of the government’s undertaking to continue to recognise our heroes.

Premier Honourable Ralph T. O’Neal, OBE listed several contributions of Sir Olva Georges and shared snippets of his personal interaction with Sir Olva as the Chairman of the Scholarship Committee and with his service to the Methodist Church.

The Premier recalled bold decisions Sir Olva took during his tenure as a member of the Executive Council which included, making the Territory, which was a grant aided Territory, a signatory to the charter of the now University of the West Indies.

During the reflection, Mr. William Georges, nephew of Sir Olva Georges recalled times spent with his uncle during his family’s visits to Tortola. He described Sir Olva as a modest, humble person although very dignified. He said Sir Olva was “a person whom the Territory could be proud of.”
Permanent Secretary in the Premier’s Office Mrs. Rosalie Adams, who chaired the ceremony presented to the family on behalf of the Chief Archive and Records Management Officer Mrs. Verna Penn Moll, a copy of the publication, “Snapshots of the Past” which features photographs of Sir Olva Georges with Her Majesty the Queen and Lady Georges.

The four winners of the Premier’s Office quiz held on ZBVI Radio from April 13 – 16, as a lead up to the ceremony, were also recognized. They were Soraya Durante, Rakeem Turnbull, Kilyn LaPlante and Khadija Liburd, all of the Elmore Stoutt High School.

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Sir Olva Georges after 338 years of British rule was the only BVIslander to be honoured with a knighthood and was the recipient of the Territory’s first state funeral in 1976.

Government’s remains committed to honouring and recognising the contributions of persons who aid in the development of the Territory.

Noteworthy accomplishments of Sir James Olva Georges include his service on the Legislative Council of the Leeward Islands from 1939 – 1949; his service in the first to sixth Legislative and Executive Councils of the Virgin Islands from 1950 – 1967 and his acting appointment as Commissioner in 1946, 1954.

Monument of Sir James Olva Georges. Photoby Ms. Jasmine Perez/GIS.

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