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Messages of condolences pour in for Labia Theatre veteran ‘Aunty Kathy’

Kathleen Vigeland. Picture: Supplied

Kathleen Vigeland. Picture: Supplied

Published Nov 21, 2023

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Cape Town - Tributes have poured have flooded in for the late Labia Theatre veteran staff member Kathleen Vigeland from Silvertown.

The 70-year-old was a long-standing cashier at the iconic cinema in Cape Town, for more than 20 years.

“Aunty Kathy” as she was affectionately known, made history in her family for being the first of her 10 siblings, to bag her Psychology degree at the age of 68.

Colleagues and friends of the bubbly face that met you at the Labia Theatre entrance, flocked to social media to share memories of her legacy.

The Labia wrote: “The Labia family is heartbroken to share the sad news of the passing of our beloved, long-serving staff member Kathy Vigeland. It’s hard to accept that ‘Miss Kathy’ will no longer greet us from the box office. Her calm, caring, gentle yet strong character was an inspiration to us all. She will be deeply missed by everyone who knew her.”

Labia Theatre’s Ann Kraus told Cape Argus: “Kathy joined our team as a cashier about 20 years ago after taking early retirement at Standard Bank. She has been an integral part of our Labia family assisting with the daily smooth running of the business and always stepping in to help whenever needed. You could not find a more honest, diligent and dependable member of staff, always calm and in control of every situation as it arose. She was kind, friendly and fun-loving. She was Aunty Kathy, a true mentor and loved by all the staff and patrons alike. She has left a huge void in our lives and will forever be loved and missed.

“The highlights were her absolute passion and love for the Labia. It was a huge part of her life. There is nothing she would not do for the Labia and always went the extra mile to make that happen.

“She was always appreciative of everything she received, never complained and felt blessed to be part of the Labia family. She was unflappable in the cash box regardless of how long the queues were and was able to deal with the public in a firm, friendly and respectful manner.”

Kathleen Vigeland. Picture: Supplied

One of her nine siblings, Ruth Golding, 63, said: “We are broken, she was the leader in her home, she was one with many firsts among our siblings, she was the first to be able to drive, the first to obtain her driving licence, the first to obtain her degree.

“Kathy went to UWC after she matriculated, she studied Psychology, but during her studies, she was forced to drop out because of the 1976 riots happening at the time. But she never gave up on her dream and returned to university all these years later, to reach that goal of a degree. She never got to practise Psychology but was proud of her degree.”

Aunty Kathy passed away in hospital on November 14, due to natural causes. She leaves behind her husband, daughter, stepdaughter and two grandchildren.