Breechman Andries Macheke, son of the late Emmah and Peter Macheke, died on April 14.
He was not only a cousin but a friend, brother, adviser, confidant and a comedian of note.
Most of the things he said in his happier moments became well-used jokes among his friends. For example, when you greeted him he would say, aaauuuumaaaannnnn in a Mandoza-like voice and this became a popular greeting line used by those closest to him.
He was a friendly person who enjoyed telling jokes and seeing people laugh wherever he went.
His dress sense was impeccable as was his love for other nice things in life.
Though he was almost 50 years old, he was still young at heart and we expected him to have many more years of life. The last few weeks of his life were depressing as his health gradually ebbed away.
Despite the constant pain he felt, he put up a good fight with a lot of humour. Even during his final days he kept on assuring us all that "angeke ngingale amapapa mina" (Township lingo for I am not about to die).
He started school at Emjindini location in Barberton and went on to matriculate at Khumbula High School.
He had a stint as a teacher at Fumana High School, where he produced good results. He then worked as a salesman in the furniture industry for many years and spent the remaining years of his life in the employ of the Metropolitan Life insurance company as a consultant.
He is survived by his wife Zandile, five daughters, Dido, Pontsolino, Zamacheke, Lindiwe and Khomotso, grandchildren Makhosonke and Lwandle and sisters Phindile and Martina.
As the poet Brian Emmanuel Apollo puts it, "God is still in control ... Knowing that in the good or the bad, we are still blessed. Because our God, not us, knows what's truly best."
Macheke will be buried tomorrow at the Barberton cemetery. The service in the old village starts at 9am.