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June Katei: Financed Her Own Wedding, Bought Rings Only To Be Dumped After 120 Days

By Kimani Kuria

June Katei Reeves is a Kenyan woman who burst into the limelight after sharing the struggle in her marriage that ended four months after she wedded. In a Facebook post, June narrated how the ordeal affected her emotional well being revealing details of how her partner physically abused her and was promiscuous. 

In this article, WoK takes a look into June’s journey starting with her life, education, career, and broken marriage after funding her glamorous wedding.

Early Life and Family

June Katei was born on 5th June 1988 to a single mother. Her mother, a former nurse, lived in Kabete when she was born and after a while, she met one Dr. Reeves at the hospital where she worked. The doctor was from Liberia and after relocating to Kenya, would move in with June’s mother. This was the start of a new chapter of their lives as he gave them a good lifestyle and June was treated like a princess. At this point, her mother was furthering her studies overseas in Japan when an unfortunate incident claimed the life of her doting stepfather. She was playing with other children when her stepfather visited a neighbour’s place and shortly after there was a commotion and June would see her father being taken away, dead. According to the hospital records, he succumbed to a heart attack.

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Personal Life

After his death, they moved to Buruburu, scaling down from the high life as their lives had taken a complete turn. She says her mother tried to maintain their lifestyle but it was taking a toll on her. June’s mother was doing well and even had a job at Mater Hospital and would invest in a variety of businesses. In an interview on the Lynn Ngugi Show on YouTube, June Katei revealed that a matatu-business deal gone sour would send her mother to prison when she was just eleven years old. The two would then move to Mombasa after her release in search of a means to live a life they could afford. Her mother got a job but after a while, she started sinking into alcoholism. This led to her mother losing her job and her health took a hit. She suffered a stroke that paralyzed half her body. June’s mother had to be taken to Makueni to live with her extended family as they cumulatively took care of her. At this point, June had to become the mother figure to her brother who is ten years younger than she is. She noted that since he had not experienced a mother’s love and care as he should have, she had to fill in the gap. The two have since built and maintained a solid relationship.

June’s Education Background

According to her LinkedIn profile, she attended The Aga Khan High School, Mombasa, between the years 2003 and 2006 before joining Kenyatta University in 2008, where she pursued and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science degree in 2012. Additionally, June enrolled at the Nethope Academy for an Internship and Mentoring Program for Women in ICT from 2012 to 2013. June is currently pursuing her Master of Science in Information Technology Management degree at the University of Nairobi.

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Successful Career Journey and Achievements to date

She has over ten years of cumulative experience in Software engineering working across several firms. While still pursuing her undergraduate degree at Kenyatta University, June worked as an Academic Research Writer between January 2010 and August 2012. She would later secure a three months internship position as a System Administrator intern at the institution from May to July 2011. In the year 2012, June worked with Techno Brain Limited as a Software Test Engineer a position she held from September of the same year to August 2014. Her work here earned her a promotion to Software Test Lead in the same organization in August 2014 before leaving Techno Brain in February 2015. 

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June worked as a Test Automation Consultant at System Tech Limited from March to April 2015 before moving to Turnkey Africa Ltd where she secured an employment opportunity as the Software Test Manager from May 2015 to May 2017. Her tenure ended and she would later move to Purplefire where she worked as a Quality Assurance and Testing Consultant from December 2017 to August 2018. Her quest for greener pastures landed June at CarePay where she worked as the Quality Assurance Manager between September 2018 and March 2020 before earning a promotion to Quality Assurance Chapter Lead in April 2020.

Additionally, June is has been a  Professional Speaker and Corporate Master of Ceremony at Le Femme Coaching from March 2018 to date.

Looking for Love

The software engineer met her future husband in 2009 when they were in college through a friend of his. The two fell in love and would then move in together after eight months of dating. Their come-we-stay relationship would then be bombarded with several issues that chipped their relationship. June and her boyfriend would work together to maintain their lives and support their families.

She noted that both of them came from single-parent homes and so they were supportive to their families. As her career progressed, the duo began falling apart. In a bid to make their relationship work, she decided to go down on one knee and proposed to her boyfriend. June said she bought her engagement ring, paid her dowry, and catered for the financial needs of her ‘ruracio’ and Christian wedding. She would later state that it was a desperate move as she needed someone to love her, offer a complete family to her daughter, and make things work for them.

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On Her Struggles in a Failed Marriage

They had a tumultuous honeymoon and their house became unbearable for other people to stay citing his toxic behavior. This was despite taking premarital classes before exchanging vows on 19th December 2020 and becoming the Karanjas. After she found out that her husband was involved with an ex-girlfriend, she called it quits and sent him away. They would then separate in 2018 after living together for nine years. This took a heavy toll on her and her daughter. She could not understand what was going on between her parents and this would reflect in her behavior at school.

She was put under school therapy sessions to help her maneuver the situation. June Katei says this was helpful to her as she could then have conversations about her father more seamlessly. On June’s side, she talked with friends and after developing anxiety attacks, she had to seek medical attention. She was put under medication and she then sought therapy sessions that she attends regularly to date. Her therapy sessions were helpful as she regained her self-esteem and her self-identity. June also cited that she attended Divorce Classes at Nairobi Chapel under Pastor Nick Korir. 

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Words of Advice to women sharing her plight

The therapy sessions have been instrumental in June’s emotional healing and now she stands tall to encourage fellow women going through the challenges that befell her. June urges women not to go through it all alone but rather find a support system and the journey together with other women. June also encourages society at large to avoid pointing fingers at women whose marriages have failed and look at both sides of the coin before passing such a judgment.

Contacts

June maintains an engaging Social media presence where she shares and creates awareness about mental health and emotional healing, self-growth, intentional parenting, and Jesus. You may get hold of her using the social media and professional handles below;

Instagram: June Katei Reeves (@reeveskateijune)

Twitter: June Katei Reeves (@ReevesJune)

Facebook: June Katei Reeves

Youtube: June Katei Reeves

LinkedIn: June Katei Reeves