It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Valerie Lester. Despite the quiet progression of metastasising melanoma since 2012 and the threat of imminent demise since 2017, Valerie continued to be largely symptom-free, and spent 2018 living life to the fullest - writing, travelling, laughing and loving. She succumbed peacefully in hospice care near her home in Hingham, Massachusetts, on Friday 7th June with her children Toby and Alison at her bedside.
By a master-stroke of planning and Valerie’s determination in completing such a daunting task, MARVELS: The Life of Clarence Bicknell, Botanist, Archaeologist, Artist was published in June of 2018, the centenary year. Events were held in Bordighera and Parma (Italy), Tende (France), Cambridge (England) and Hingham (USA) to launch the book and celebrate Clarence’s talent and output. In the last two years of this work, she and her closest family and friends knew she was under the threat of the cancer, but she delivered herself to her work and her life with extraordinary gusto, never once complaining or slacking.
We mourn the passing of a good friend, a bright intellect, a person full of life and a warm human being. She enriched the lives of everyone she touched and she leaves a rich legacy.