Grave end to Youth Day
Residents of Westbury, Johannesburg, yesterday came out in large numbers to bid farewell to a young mother, her two children and her niece who were all burnt to death.
The four died after a relative set their house on fire after a quarrel over a family house.
The deceased mother, Jeanette Simmers, had quarrelled with her relative over the ownership of the house that Jeanette and her children were occupying at the time of their deaths.
Her relative had even earlier threatened to burn the house down.
Jeanette's relative is still in police custody and is due to appear in court soon.
On Sunday last week, Jeanette's relative allegedly set the house on fire causing the deaths of Jeanette, her boyfriend and father of her two children, Micheal Campbell. The children are her daughter Logan, 9, son Roban, 3 and niece Loreal Beesteboer, 2.
The three survivors are Jeanette's other son Megan, 7, Loreal's parents Raymond and Nicolette Beesteboer.
At the funeral service held at the Westbury Communal Hall, family members could not hold back their tears as speakers took the stage to pay their tributes.
Jeanette was described as a "loving person" who was dedicated to everything she did.
Westbury ward councillor Theresa van der Merwe said: "It is very saddening that the nation is commemorating Youth Day and we are here to bid farewell to young people."
Pastor Owen Delport of Apostolic Faith Mission Emmanuel said: "These children had their whole life ahead of them but it was taken away from them."
Campbell was buried separately.