The family of a missing Mitchells Plain man were shocked to learn that their beloved oom had been lying in the Salt River Mortuary since 1 May.
Thomas Hartzenberg, 61, from Woodlands is said to have walked away from his home, leaving his sister and her children worried about his safety.
Maureen Petersen, 65, says her baby brother showed signs of Alzheimer’s in the past year and had walked off and disappeared twice last year.
Thomas went missing on 23 April and is believed to have been found dead in the Table View area.
His niece Edwina Petersen said they don’t know what happened to Thomas or how he ended up dead.
“We are told he was brought in on 1 May and has been lying there unidentified after he died of natural causes,” she says.
“We couldn’t even view his body when we arrived there, but we could see his face on a monitor, that it’s indeed my uncle.”
Maureen adds: “Last year we found him at Karl Bremer Hospital because he arrived there dehydrated, and a few months later we found him at Somerset Hospital.
“We didn't worry at first, but this time it was too long. I was worried because I know he can’t cope without his entjie and coffee.
Maureen, who spent every night praying for her brother’s safe return, says she is now at ease and relieved from the stress of worrying.
“I am sad that he is gone, but I’m relieved to have closure. The concern of not knowing where he is for this long, made me stressed to the point where I lost weight.
“We don’t have any answers at the moment as we are still in shock, but we hope to get answers tomorrow.”