Friends and patients saddened by death of city cardiologist

2011-09-27 00:00

FRIENDS and those who were touched by the work done by the late Dr Adrian Pearce have expressed their pain at losing a man of his calibre when they learnt of his death at the weekend.

Dr Pearce (44) was killed during a cycling training session when he was knocked off his bike by a woman driving a white Mazda Drifter towards the Thornville area on the R623 Mandeston road on Saturday morning.

“What a loss, it cannot be measured. I am shocked and trembling as I write this e-mail to you. I thought I am strong, but am feeling very weak about this loss of a very warm cardiologist I have ever met,” said Sibusiso Mkhize, whose mother was a patient of Pearce.

He said Pearce “raised her from the dead” when she had been in ICU for more than three weeks in February this year.

“I in fact lied to my mother that the doctor had relocated to Cape Town, but he had arranged another specialist to look after her, because I do not know how to tell my mother that he has passed on,” he said.

Mkhize’s mother had a “mother and son” relationship with Pearce.

Mkhize added, “I recall one day when she demanded to be seen by the doctor despite the busy schedule and Pearce, who also took her as his mother, attended to her.

“What a loss to South Africa. The Pearce family should know that they are not alone in this tragedy and God, as the provider, will console them more than we can do.”

Dr Sanjay Maharaj, a close friend of more than 15 years and also a cardiologist at Netcare St. Anne’s Hospital, spoke fondly of Pearce, describing their relationship as more like that of brothers.

“We have been friends since our university days and we had been the only cardiologists at St Anne’s. He was a selfless people’s person,” said Maharaj.

He said Pearce had no other intention but to see to the wellbeing of others.

“He took his [doctor’s] oath literally because even though he had a private practice he also assisted in Grey’s Hospital because they only have one cardiologist for such a big public hospital,” said Maharaj.

He said even though he had a busy schedule, he made certain that he taught students three times a week in Grey’s Hospital.

“He gave so much that I would even shout at him, but he never listened to me because he was passionate about seeing happiness in others,” added Maharaj.

Police spokesperson Lieutenant Joey Jeevan said at this stage they only know that it is alleged that a woman in her 50s was driving towards Thornville and a cyclist veered off the road and she was allegedly unable to avoid hitting him. However, the investigation is continuing.

A memorial service for Pearce will be held at the Marian Centre in town from 3 pm to 5 pm today and his funeral will be held tomorrow at St. Mary’s Catholic church in Jabu Ndlovu Street from 10 am.

Meanwhile, Howick police spokesperson Captain Lolly Moodley said they are still finalising the case of a cyclist, Olive Knight (54) of Durban, killed while competing in the Time Freight Midmar-Notts Road Race in October 2010.

thobani.ngqulunga@witness.co.za

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