Gene Steede received an MBE for his contribution to music and culture. *Photo supplied
Gene Steede received an MBE for his contribution to music and culture. *Photo supplied

THURSDAY, DEC. 30: Six Bermudians have been recognized by the Queen in her New Year’s Honours List with Gene Steede and Jane Bielby receiving an MBE.

Mr. Steede received the award for his contribution to music and culture while Mrs. Bielby was given the award for her extensive work with Girl Guides.

Mrs. Bielby said: “When I first learned that I was to be awarded an MBE, I was completely overwhelmed — shock, excitement, gratitude and ‘why me?’ all hit me at once.  

“I have been in Bermuda Girl Guiding for over 30 years and have served in numerous capacities — secretary, guide leader, trainer, campfire leader, music advisor, special projects coordinator, ­treasurer, etc.

“I can honestly say that I have loved every minute of my involvement in this wonderful organization.

“It can truly be said to have been a labour of love for me. “

Mrs. Bielby also thanked all those who have been involved in Girl Guides, her husband and her family.

On his honour, Mr. Steede said: “Well, I don’t know what to say. I appreciate the recognition and I’ll prize it. I’ll value it.

“It’s hard to say anything. I just appreciate the recognition.”

Asked how he felt when he was told, Mr. Steede said: “It felt wonderful. It’s very nice for this to be bestowed upon a quiet, loving man.

“It was a shock. It was very uplifting because of the way the world is going anything right not will lift your spirits.”

Other awardees for the Queens certificates and badges of honour include Myrtle Perinchief for community service, Karen Pollard for working with the Bermuda Festival of the Performing Arts, Linda Sousa for her work as a disabled riding instructor and Kristy Burgess for community service.

Linda Sousa: “I am absolutely thrilled and honoured and the hardest has been keeping it a secret, not being able to tell all my friends and family.

“I am really thrilled. It’s completely unexpected.

“The one nice thing is it might help to give more attention to our therapeutic riding programme, not just to recognise myself but also all the volunteers.

“It came so out of the blue. It was the last thing on my mind.”

Myrtle Perinchief said: “I’m just happy to receive it. I have been told many time I should be getting it but I said ‘no, that’s okay’ because I do things from my heart.

“I love to help people in any way that I can. I was surprised and I wasn’t surprised. In a way I really was.

“I didn’t think I was going to get it this year. I am happy to know that there are people out there who think of me in that way. I’m just pleased that I’m being honoured.”

Ms Burgess and Mrs. Pollard were not available for comment.