Widow’s year-long vigil for husband

2010-08-26 00:00

CENTURION — For a whole year a woman went to a mortuary in Johannesburg every week and prayed that her husband would rise from the dead.

On Monday Nadia Chetty had her husband, Dr Seelan Chetty (40), a specialist from Sandton, cremated.

“I think she finally realised he’s not coming back,” André Kerr, co-owner of Kerr’s Funeral Parlour in Johannesburg, said yesterday.

“She always hoped he would wake up, but she has now realised that he is dead.”

Dr Chetty died of a heart attack on August 10 last year in Port Elizabeth. His body was taken to Kerr’s Funeral Parlour.

Nadia refused to bury her husband and forbade his family from making any funeral arrangements.

Apparently she belongs to a church group known only as ­“Lagos”.

Kerr said Nadia and a pastor came to the funeral parlour every week to pray for Dr Chetty. His body was embalmed.

The widow informed Kerr on Friday that she wanted to have her husband cremated, and on Monday they held a ceremony attended only by family members.

Kerr said he has been in the industry for 35 years, and this is the first time he’s come across something like this.

Kerr says initially they charged Nadia R400 per day to store Dr Chetty’s body. By the time Dr Chetty was cremated, the account was over R130 000, which Kerr has written off.

“The worst part is that there are some people who simply can’t live without their life partners,” said Kerr.

The couple have two young daughters.

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