Maggie Smith was born in 1930. She was a journalist and became the first woman news editor in Africa of the Sunday Times in Johannesburg in the 60s when the press was truly male dominated. At that time women in the media mainly did "soft" jobs, like working for the "women's pages", covering entertainment & writing soft features, & as news desk secretaries.
Fiery Maggie, in her trademark flowing kaftans, was not someone to be trifled with and led by example. A highly political person and an outspoken critic of apartheid and the apartheid government, she was detained in the early 60s. She finally went into exile in London in 1977.
As a journalist her contacts on all levels, including the British government, the anti-apartheid movement and the African National Congress (ANC) in exile, were extensive.
Maggie Smith passed away in London, England on 18 November 2015. She is survived by her children, Peta and Sally, seven grandchildren and six great grand children.
She had an enduring love for South Africa its people and its great beauty. Her ashes will be returned to the family plot at Westpark Cemetery Johannesburg, Gauteng.