A Kraaifontein couple, who recently celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary, have died just days apart.
Pastor Benjamin George Freeman, 92, and Dora Freeman, 93, celebrated the milestone on 25 November 2020.
The family confirmed to the Cape Argus that Dora’s death was caused by Covid-19.
Daughter Lizette Louw, 57, from Kuils River said her father died just hours after turning 92 at their Rembrandt Street, Scottsville, home on New Year's Day.
“My dad passed away five-and-a-half hours after his birthday, in the early morning of the first of January. It was from old age, I would say.”
Eleven days after her father's death and three days after his funeral, her mother passed away at Karl Bremer Hospital on Monday at 9.45pm.
“After my father’s passing, she said she wanted to go home to him. Her face dropped and she wasn't the same anymore.
“She is (usually) a very happy person with a smile on her face. She passed away of sadness and didn't want to be around anymore.”
The hospital informed the family that her mother’s cause of death had been Covid-19 pneumonia. The pair were not tested for Covid-19 prior to their passing.
Lizette said although the family was not taking their death well, they were grateful that their parents had lived a beautiful life.
“They had a full life. They were never sick. We didn't have parents that we needed to nurse. They were happy,” she said.
“It's like when two of the most beautiful flowers are taken out of your garden. Our sunshine is gone. That is how we are experiencing it.”
She said her parents were loved by many, and reciprocated that love.
“My father was forever working in places where nobody wanted to work, believing there were diamonds there.”
The couple met as singers from different church choirs in 1950, and tied the knot just five months later.
However, Benjamin was struggling with alcoholism and Dora wanted to divorce him.
“When he was 25 or 27, someone came to his house, and in his drunken state he gave his life to the Lord; since then everything changed. Their love story was with the Lord,” says Lizette.
She adds: “I don't see it often in people, but they used every cent of their money for community work.”
About five years ago, they bought a property in Delft to transform it into a children’s care centre.
Their children are now determined to see their parents’ dream realised.
The couple had 10 children, 19 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
On 3 January, their first great-great-grandchild – a baby boy – was born.