Former Governor-General Sir Frederick Nathaniel Ballantyne, who died today (Thursday), age 83, will be accorded a state funeral next Wednesday, Jan. 29, the Office of the Prime Minister has announced.
Official viewing of the body will be held on Wednesday at the House of Assembly from 10 a.m. to 12 noon, the Cabinet Secretary said in a statement.
Officials will be invited to the viewing from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., and the general public from 11 a.m. to noon.
The funeral service is scheduled to take place on Wednesday, at the Kingstown Methodist Church.
Viewing will be from 1 p.m., followed by the service at 2 p.m. Interment will be at the Kingstown Cemetery.
As a mark of respect, all flags throughout the state will be flown at half-mast until the day of the state funeral.
The cabinet secretary said that Sir Frederick’s family has requested that there be no taking of photographs of the body during the periods of viewing.
“The Government takes this opportunity to extend sincere condolences to the family of the late Sir Frederick Nathaniel Ballantyne, GCMG, MD,” the statement said.
Sir Frederick died at his home on Thursday morning, a mere five months after demitting office as St. Vincent and the Grenadines’ longest-serving head of state.
His death comes just under two weeks after Gonsalves, speaking on Jan. 12, asked for prayers for the then-ailing leader, who was in hospital.
Sir Frederick, a retired cardiologist, served as Governor-General from Sept. 2, 2002 until July 31, 2019.
In July 2019, Gonsalves announced that Sir Frederick had indicated a desire to demit office, for health reasons.
Susan Dougan, a retired educator and former Cabinet Secretary, succeeded him, taking up the post on Aug. 1, 2019.