Sailing legend Kwailan La Borde dies at 91

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Sailing legend Kwailan La Borde is seen in this photo posted to her son Pierre La Borde’s Facebook page. La Borde’s post, which accompanied this photo, stated his mother had died at 91. – Photo courtesy Pierre La Borde’s Facebook Page

Kwailan La Borde, who together with her husband Harold and their then five-year-old son Pierre, became the first Trinis to circumnavigate the globe, has died, her son Pierre confirmed in a Facebook post. She was 91.

La Borde posted on his FB account on May 30:

“Dear family and friends, this is to inform you that the First Lady of sailing in Trinidad and Tobago, my mom Kwailan La Borde, TC, passed away peacefully in her sleep last night. She was 91-years of age, and lived a full and successful life.

“We are not mourning but celebrating her life. Thanking you in advance for your thoughts and condolences. I will post funeral arrangements as soon as I know.”

The post was accompanied by a photo of Kwailan which her son said was taken in the Sydney harbour in Australia, in 1985 during family’s second circumnavigation.

According to online reference website, Wikipedia, Kwailan, her husband Harold and their son Pierre set out from Trinidad on February 02, 1969 in their 40-foot ketch Hummingbird II. Four years later, they became the first Trinbagonians to circumnavigate the globe. On their return home, the received the nation’s then highest award the now discontinued Trinity Cross.

The government bought the vessel which is now on display.

The La Bordes went on to circumnavigate the world a second time via Cape Horn in 1984 on board Hummingbird III. This voyage was completed in 1986. Harold and Kwailan got married in 1959. He died in June, 2016.

Apart from sailing, the La Bordes also wrote several books including An Ocean to Ourselves (1962), All Oceans Blue (1977), and Lonely Oceans South (1987). Kwailan would later complete an autobiography entitled Wind, Sea, and Faith.