Mrs Joan Christie CVO OBE has passed away following a tragic accident last week.
In 1976, Mrs Christie was awarded the MBE for services to the Government and then in 2005, she was awarded the OBE for services to Education.
In 2017, HM The Queen awarded Mrs Christie the Commander of the Victoria Order, a private honour for services directly to the Royal family.
She received an Honorary Freedom of the Borough from Causeway Coast & Glens Borough Council, Lisburn and Castlereagh City Council and Mid and East Antrim Borough Council.
Mrs Christie was appointed as Lord-Lieutenant of County Antrim in 2008 and retired from the role in June 2019.
In a statement this morning, Councillor Stephanie Quigley said “I am totally heartbroken about this terrible tragedy. To have known Joan Christie was such a great privilege as she was the most beautiful lady in every way.
“She was kindness, love and dignity personified and carried out her role as the late Queen’s representative with such grace and joy. She touched so many lives in a very special way.
“I was so blessed to have held her hand and walked her to her seat at her retirement gala dinner in 2019, a moment I will never forget.
“My deepest condolences and prayers to her much loved family her son Marcus, her two daughters and the entire family circle. May her beautiful soul now rest in peace.”
A spokesperson for Bushmills British Legion said “We are extremely saddened and heartbroken this morning to learn of the passing of our dear friend & former Lord Lieutenant for Co.Antrim, Mrs Joan Christie CVO. We offer our deepest sympathy to her family and trust that God will comfort them in their time of sorrow. Being a regular attender at our Branch events over the years she will be sadly missed by us all.”