News of islanders' births, marriages, deaths, and significant birthdays and wedding anniversaries, both on Tristan da Cunha and abroad, during 2014.

2014 Tristan Family News Page
The current population update is now on the Family News Home Page

Golden Wedding Celebration

Eric and Martha Glass
celebrated their Golden Wedding
on Monday 8th December .
This photo was taken the previous day by their daughter Tina.

Martha and Eric were married in St Mary's Church
on 8th December 1964 after returning to Tristan
following the 1961 evacuation to the UK in 1961.

Martha and Eric returned to England in 1965
to join Eric's father and mother Gordon and Susan Glass
who decided to remain in the UK.
Their only child Tina was born in England on 2nd August 1970,
but the family returned to Tristan da Cunha in 1972
where they have lived ever since.

Obituary for Piers Hagan

We regret to announce the death of Piers Hendrik Hagan who passed away peacefully on the morning of Tuesday 11th November aged 76. The funeral took place the following day.

Piers was born to parents Lizzie and David Hagan on March 1st 1938. He is survived by his wife Evelyn, sons Karl and Colin, granddaughter Kaitlyn and his brother Donald.

Piers worked in the Fishing Factory and as a fisherman for many years. Later he worked in the Public Works Department until he retired. He was also part of the team who built the Tristan Thatched House for the Tourism Department.

Piers thoroughly enjoyed working at the Potato Patches, which he did up until just a couple of weeks before his death. He was at his happiest when he was busy. He was always cheerful, smiling and caring to all who met him. He will be greatly missed by family and friends.

The family would like to thank everyone who supported them and sent messages of condolences during this difficult time.

Birth of Amelia Leitner

We are delighted to announce
the birth of Amelia Rose Leitner
on 5th September 2014 in Germany. Amelia weighed 2,57kg at birth
and is the daughter of proud parents Mariah (nee Green) and Marko Leitner and a sister to Liam.

Photos sent by Mariah were taken
on 8th September and we feature
photos of Chief Islander Ian Lavarello's return visit to Germany
to stay with the family
in November 2014
on our Chief Islander page


Obituary for Martha Swain

We regret to announce the death of Martha Frances Swain who passed away peacefully in her sleep on 11th October 2014, aged 79. The funeral took place the following afternoon.

Martha was born on 14th December 1934 to parents Violet & William Lavarello and was one of four children. She married Jacob Swain and is survived by her son Neil, grandchildren Wayne and Glenda and great-grandchild Lucas.

Martha worked at the Fishing Factory as a processor for many years but retired to take care of her late husband Jacob. She was active most of her life and enjoyed the work at the Potato Patches. In fact she was planting potatoes at the Patches the afternoon before passing away.

Martha was a cheerful person and loved a joke. She will be greatly missed by her family and friends.

Thanks are extended to all those who sent messages of sympathy and to those who supported the family during this sad time.

October Wedding
Photos from Lorraine Repetto and report from Shirley Squibb
Sonia Swain married Andy Williams in St Mary's Church on Thursday 9th October.
Given away by her father Thomas Swain, the wedding was conducted by Rev Denzall Snell and was followed by photographs taken in front of The Residency on a beautiful spring afternoon and afterwards by a Reception in the Prince Philip Hall.

Photo shows the bridal party with Best Man George Swain alongside Andy and Sonia with Maid of Honour Natasha Glass to Sonia's right and the bridesmaids left to right: Lynette Green, , Glenda Swain, Rhyanna Swain, Chloe Glass and in front Andy and Sonia's daughters Natasha and Mia Williams.

Above: Family group at the Reception in the Prince Philip Hall.
Left to Right: Amy Green, Richard and Francesca Green, Lucy Swain, Thomas Swain, Andy and Sonia Williams, George Swain, Carol Swain, Harold Green and Pamela Swain.

Right: Mr and Mrs Williams in front of The Residency

New Island Residents

Shirley Squibb's photo taken on 27th July shows
her husband Jody Squibb with their son Charlie Squibb
and Kelly Burns with her daughter Savanna Burns Green.

Jody and his island wife Shirley will gain full residency in September this year.
Kelly is living with her island partner Shane Green.

Both Charlie and Savanna are regarded as Resident Islanders from birth.

Obituary for Millie Sparks

We regret to announce the death of Mildred Francis Sparks (nee Repetto) who passed away peacefully at home in Hampshire, UK on Tuesday 24th July aged 80.

Mildred was born on 23rd April 1934 to Arthur and Edith Repetto. She was the proud mother to Sylvia, Dawn and Andrew and devoted grandmother to Sarah, Rachel, Lindsey and Keiron. She is also survived by her brother Ernest (on Tristan) and sister Violet (in the UK).

She will be sadly missed by family and friends in Britain and on Tristan. The funeral service will be held on 14th August 2014 at Fawley Church and a service will also be held on Tristan at the same time.

Birth of Owen Glass

We are delighted to announce the birth of Owen Robert Glass in Cape Town on Thursday 26th June. Owen is the third child of proud parents Simon and Natasha Glass and a brother to Chloe and Jamie.

Obituary for Aron Swain

We regret to announce the sudden death of Aron Cheseldon Swain on Monday 23rd June 2014 aged 42. He suffered a tragic accident on Sunday and passed away peacefully the following day.

Aron was born on the 15th March 1972 to proud parents David and Doreen Swain (nee Rogers) He is survived by his wife Debbie (nee Hagan), his parents and by brother Ricky and sister Priscilla.

After leaving school aged 15 Aron was employed by the Tristan Government as an Electrician, continuing in this work until his death. He applied great devotion to his job and never complained when called out unexpectedly to fix an electrical problem. Aron was also a crew member on the cargo raft during off-loading days and was also employed by Ovenstone as a fisherman, partnering Adrian Swain on fishing days. He loved the sea and was seen on many occasions going to the beach with his fishing rod.


Aron was an enthusiastic hard worker, who lived a life of courage, compassion, and humility. Whenever passing he always greeted people with a generous, great big friendly smile. Aron was a popular, pleasant and caring person who was valued by his wife, family and the community. He will be greatly missed by all those who knew him, and leave behind many treasured memories.

Aron is sadly missed by his loving wife Debbie, Parents David and Doreen, Brother Ricky, Sister Priscilla Hagan and all close family relations and friends on the island and overseas.

The family would like to thank all those who have sent kind messages and given support at this sad and difficult time.

Birth of Savanna Green

We are delighted to announce the birth of Savanna Rose Burns Green in Cape Town on 27th May 2014.

Savanna weighed 3.2kgs. at birth and is the daughter of proud parents Kelly Burns and Shane Green.

Obituary for Gabriel Lavarello

We regret to announce the death of Gabriel Joseph Lavarello who passed away aged 83 on Wednesday 19th March after a long illness. The funeral took place the following day.

Gabriel was born on 23rd March 1930 to William and Violet (nee Glass) and was one of four siblings. He married Mary Glass on 30 th January 1957.

Gabriel was employed by the Agriculture Department, served as barman in the pub for many years, and was also a fisherman. Gabriel was very strong and fit in his youth and was coxswain for ‘Longboat’. He always had a good story to tell of Tristan in his younger days and even after he became housebound his early life stories were still told. He will be sadly missed by his family and friends.

Gabriel is survived by his wife Mary, children Marion, Beverley and John, and grandchildren Patrick, Lynette, Cedric and Rhyanna.

The family would like to thank everyone who supported them during Gabriel’s illness and all those who sent messages of condolences. God’s blessings are sent to you all.

Birth of Charlie Squibb

We are delighted to announce the birth of Charlie William Squibb in Cape Town on 13th February 2014 to proud parents Shirley and Jody Squibb.

The family will return to Tristan da Cunha and Shirley and Jody will gain full residency status in September this year. However, under Tristan rules, Charlie will be regarded as a Resident Tristan Islander from birth. The addition of another surname to the Tristan da Cunha community is significant, especially now that a boy child has been born.

The photo of Charlie was taken on 22nd February and sent by Jody.

Obituary for Ida Green

We regret to announce the death of Ida Josephine Green who passed away aged 85 on Thursday 16th January after a short illness. The funeral took place the following day.

Ida was born on 10th May 1928 to Charles and Emma Green (nee Hagan) and was the youngest of six children. She married Alan Green in 1947.

Ida loved going to the Potato Patches and spending time with the family. Her last outing was to join the family on Sheep Shearing Day last month. She was also involved in picking and carding wool until recently, and was one of the group of ladies who knitted for the Tourism Centre. She was actually knitting a pair of socks when she was taken ill in December.

Ida is survived by her children Joseph and Margaret, grandchildren Joanne, Iris and Graham, and great grandchildren Sasha, Jason, Caryn and Rachel.

She always had a smile for everyone and will be sadly missed by her family and friends.

The family would like to thank everyone who supported them during Ida's illness and all those who sent messages of condolence. This was very much appreciated.

The photograph above taken by Shirley Squibb in November 2013 shows Ida with the section she produced for a huge patchwork screen completed by the Tristan Knitting Team of 48 island ladies for a special French knitwear order.
- see the Patchwork Screen Project page for more details.