john_a_osborne_web.jpgOLVESTON, Montserrat —John A. Osborne, former chief minister of the tiny British Caribbean territory of Montserrat, has died. He was 74. Osborne's children said he died peacefully Jan. 2 at a hospital in Kentucky. He had been suffering from an undisclosed illness and had been hospitalized for weeks.

The children said in a message on Facebook that they “have lost the irreplaceable center of our family and an incomparable presence in all our lives.”

Osborne was first elected chief minister in 1978 and served as the U.K. dependency's top elected official for 18 years. The island renamed its small airport after him in 2008.