The Shaleen many did not know

Shaleen Surtie-Richards was a legend that shaped the South African film industry and gave it direction, the writer says.
Shaleen Surtie-Richards was a legend that shaped the South African film industry and gave it direction, the writer says.
Image: Instagram/Shaleen Surtie-Richards

On the 7th of June 2021, the world of acting and theatre woke up to the most disturbing news after hearing about the untimely death of the veteran actress Shaleen Surtie-Richards.

Shaleen was beautiful inside out. I was blessed enough to have had her as my neighbour and I believe the whole neighborhood was twice as blessed to have had her in their midst.

She was an active and loyal member of The Kruin Community Voluntary Association . She engaged herself in different other nonprofit organisations. She shared her love with everyone, including the whole community.

Shaleen remained humble to her very last day. She did not let her fame, success and iconic status detach her from the people. It is such a great pain to lose a person of this calibre even if it's for a short time. 

Her success speaks for itself. I have seen, with my eyes, prestigious awards of different kinds well displayed in her living room.

The legend that shaped the South African film industry and gave it direction is now gone and we count her among the greats. She did her thing from the hard days of apartheid.

She's a star we have lent to the galaxy of history, a star which shall never vanish from the firmament but shall keep streaming the fields of time and space so centuries later we shall be touched by the fire and brilliance of its former life.

May her soul rest in peace. 

Tebogo Brown, Witpoortjie 

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