Tuesday, May 5
It is with much sadness that we advise you of the passing of Helen Saunders (104 years old) in Auckland.
Lin(LCM Saunders) and his young wife, Helen, arrived at Kings in the third term of 1936. They were described as a breath of fresh air, reinvigorating music at the College among the boys.
From 1936 to 1974 Helen and her late husband, Lin, enabled King’s College its music legacy, part of this legacy was establishing the Glee Club, not long after their arrival, in the Easter Term of 1937.
The Glee Club continues to this day and has provided joy for many throughout the years.
"They made music acceptable and gave it status......they brought groups together. They opened windows for many and offered escape for some."
- "O Floreat Semper" - The History of King's College 1896 - 1995.
The couple had a very positive impact on the lives of many former students and staff over the years. So strong was this connection that, in 2017, a special gathering took place at the College to mark the ‘Saunders Years’ .
Over 130 Old Collegians and partners celebrated through song and reminiscing of their time under the performing arts guidance of the Saunders. The evening also included singing 'Happy Birthday' to Helen who had just turned 101 the day before.
It is also worth noting that Helen was the first female member of the KCOCA.
"....as the girls became eligible to be recorded as Old Collegians, Helen Saunders received the honorary and honourable distinction of being number one on the list." - Acorns to Oaks.
Helen is remembered by many for her dedication to the College but also for her kindness, strength, warmth and good humour.
If any one wishes to send a message of condolence to Helen's family this can be communicated through the family's solicitor at the following email address: