British Prime Minister David Cameron and Foreign Secretary William Hague paid tribute to the former governor of the Falkland Islands Sir Rex Hunt who died at the age of 86 on Sunday.
Likewise in the Falklands flags are flown at half mast in Stanley in memory of Sir Rex, and a book of condolence will be opened at Christ Church Cathedral.
In a short statement from 10 Downing Street, PM Cameron said Sir Rex Hung should be a hero to everyone in Britain.
“He gave years of dedicated service to this country and to the Falkland Islands. Faced with invading forces in Port Stanley in April 1982, his courage, resolve and judgement fired the spirit of the Islanders and the British people to stand up to aggression and to defend the rights and freedom of the Islanders. My thoughts are with his family and friends as they mourn him today”.
Foreign Secretary William Hague said: I was very sorry to hear of the death of Sir Rex Hunt. As Governor of the Falkland Islands he served his country and the Falkland Islanders with great distinction.
“Like the Islanders themselves, he demonstrated great courage and fortitude in the face of Argentine aggression during the Falklands conflict” and after the conflict “he contributed to the transformation of the Falkland Islands into a vibrant, modern and successful democracy.
“The warm tribute the Falkland Islands Government has paid him reflects the genuine respect, gratitude and affection felt for Sir Rex by the people he worked so hard to support. His contribution will not be forgotten”.
On Sunday the Falklands Legislative Assembly underlined Sir Rex “will forever be remembered in the Islands for his years of service as Governor, and particularly for his courage and dignity in facing the Argentine invasion in 1982”.
“His numerous contributions to our home were recognised in his being granted the Freedom Of Stanley in 1985. A loyal friend of the Falkland Islands, he served for many years as Chairman of the Falkland Islands Association and as President of the UK Falkland Islands Trust. His passion and commitment to the Falkland Islands will be sorely missed”.
Sir Rex Hunt was Governor of the Falklands from 1980 to 1985. He was shipped out of the Islands by the invading Argentine forces to Montevideo but returned a few weeks later after the conflict to help with the successful economic reconstruction of the Falklands.