Memorial service for Russel Botman

A memorial service for the Stellenbosch vice-chancellor will be held on campus at 1pm today.

Stellenbosch University Vice-Chancellor Russle Botman passed away in his sleep at his home at the age of 61. Picture: via Twitter.

CAPE TOWN - University of Stellenbosch officials have requested donations be made to the Russel Botman Bursary Fund, instead of flowers.

Botman, the university's rector and vice-chancellor passed away in his sleep at his Stellenbosch home last Friday night at the age of 61.

A memorial service will be held on campus at 1pm this afternoon.

The university's Martin Viljoen says, "The family is encouraging the public, staff and students and everyone who would like to send flowers to rather consider making a donation to the Russel Botman Bursary Fund."

Botman was first appointed as rector in 2007 and was reappointed for a second five year term in 2012.

He was also a serving Director of Higher Education in South Africa, Senior Vice President of the Association of African Universities, Chairperson of the World Design Capital Cape Town 2014 Board and a director at Media24.

The Bloemfontein born professor, who is also an ordained minister, has several accolades to his name, including an honorary doctorate by Hope College in Michigan, USA for leadership in higher education.

He was scheduled to receive an honorary doctorate from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland next month.

Botman will be buried on Saturday.