Unsung hero of Bottom Road/ Princess Vlei passes away- Cecil Mona dies after short illness

ICON OF PRINCESS VLEI/ZEEKOEVLEI DIES AFTER SHORT ILLNESS- thank you Papa for your immense contribution…

Cecil Mona, otherwise known as ‘Papa’, passed away on Thursday after a short illness.

I have known Papa since 2009. He will be fondly remembered especially for the immense work he accomplished at the Bottom Road Sanctuary and EcoPark in Bottom Road, Zeekoevlei over many years, and more recently at our new home on the Zeekoevlei Peninsula.

In recent times he also was a much loved figure down at the Jolly Carp organic Market in Sasmere Estate, Retreat where he meticulously went about his business. You would normally spot him washing cars on a Saturday morning or in the week tending to the vegetable garden. Petrina Roberts, who runs the market, recently enrolled him onto a course to further his studies.

This towering figure was loved by all who knew him and the quality of his workmanship on the Vlei was nothing short of incredible. He could easily do the equivalent of 5 people’s jobs in one day.

He is also credited with playing an important role in the * ‘Dressing of the Princess’ initiative at Princess Vlei, alongside Kelvin Cochrane of CAMPS (Caring and Managing Public Spaces). You would often see him working along the banks of the Vlei. This project commenced in 2008 and he was pivotally involved until early 2014.

But other than his work ethic and his unwavering commitment to hard work he was a great person and a real gentleman. My kids adored him and had a great deal of fun working with him (and interrupting his work!) at the Vlei. They are extremely saddened by the news of his passing.

Papa you will be sorely missed by all who knew you.

Cecil will be buried in the Eastern Cape on Saturday.

RIP my friend- Farewell

Love James George and family

PS if anyone wishes to make a contribution to his funeral expenses please contact Petrina at the Jolly Carp on 074 302 3254 or 021 761 2373

*A civic-led ecological rehabilitation at the Princess Vlei in Cape Town [started in] August 2008 [and was] called “The Dressing of the Princess” It started as an extension of a civic-led ecological rehabilitation project among residents at close by Bottom Road (Ernstson 2011).

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