Bonnie Hector was a faithful servant and true friend of the community

Bonnie Hector

A stalwart of the Caribbean family has died. We all knew her as Bonnie Hector. Full of grace with an engaging smile.

Bonnie was born Cynetta Thomas in Port of Spain, Trinidad, on Oct 7 1938 to Churchill and Isabelle Thomas. She was the first of ten children. She attended Trinidad’s famous Tranquility Girls School, now Tranquility Secondary School.

Bonnie belonged to a very culturally oriented family – her mother founded the Dolcets choir, one of Trinidad’s more popular choirs of the day. She would carry her love for Trinidad and Caribbean cultural with her always; she never tire of promoting it. 

She came from a part of Trinidad that was at the forefront of the development of steelband. Pan was in her blood, and she loved it. She was a lifelong promoter of the instrument and the music that emerged from it.

After her high school graduation, Bonnie went to England to begin the next stage of her education. There she married Guyana- born Steve Hector and bore three children Roxanne, Sharon and Darryl.

The family moved to Canada in 1968 where she worked in the insurance business. But for a brief sojourn back in Trinidad, Bonnie lived the rest of her life in Canada.

It was in her second Canadian period where she threw herself into Toronto’s Caribbean culture. She worked tirelessly to promote Caribana, now Toronto Caribbean Carnival.

Sam Lewis, former head of Caribana, knew Bonnie for 70 years, and was deeply moved by the loss of his lifelong friend.

“She was inspirational. Bonnie was steeped in the culture of Trinidad which she spread in a natural, quiet way. She was also deeply connected to Caribbean culture.  She was a stalwart in the Caribana organization; always encouraging people to join and do their best for this wonderful festival. Bonnie was willing and knowledgeable about the basic activities that made the festival what it was and what it became.

I was proud to have known her and to work with her. She was a guide that always pointed us in the right direction. I will miss her dearly.”

Bonnie Hector leaves to mourn her loss, her children Roxanne, Sharon and Darryl, step-daughter Schantal, former husband Steve Hector, sisters Mavis, Hayacinth, Lorna and Ann, many nieces and nephews and a grateful Caribbean community

Bonnie Hector nee Cynetta Thomas, was laid to rest on Wednesday in Scarborough