Florence Rosberg, the widow of former Formula One world champion Nico Rosberg, died on March 10 of natural causes. She was 51.
Her funeral and a memorial service were held in Abu Dhabi, where the F1 race is held. But her memorial in Ottawa was “not attended by the honourable government of Canada,” as Rosberg’s former husband and son left a thank-you card for the city’s mayor, Jim Watson.
In an open letter to Watson, Rosberg says that the nature reserve at Taddle Creek Park “is where she was happiest.” The Ottawa Citizen reported that there were eight people in attendance at the event. The City of Ottawa said the memorial service was poorly attended.
Rosberg’s family issued a statement on Monday, in which she says “ignorance was the only event that we did not think deserving of remembrance.”
It’s not clear why the memorial service was not attended by the official parties. A spokesman for Watson said that the city will work with the family in the future to commemorate Rosberg in Ottawa.
The Washington Post reports that Rosberg was proud of her heritage. Her family was originally from Germany, and after the second world war she moved to the Netherlands. She had wanted to return to Germany and try out for the team that sponsored her husband, Mercedes, which she was able to do in 2011.
On March 3, Rosberg announced that she had breast cancer.
Nico Rosberg announced his retirement from F1 in December of 2017, saying that it was “unbearable” for him to watch his wife battle breast cancer while doing the job he loved. She revealed in a New York Times interview that she had an almost positive result, but had not found out whether it was cancer or not.