‘I want Pappa to see me': Joost's son goes to school in his dad’s shirt

By Marisa Fockema
08 February 2016

13-year-old Jordan is strong, his mom Amor says.

She was worried when Jordan (13) wanted to go to school just a day after the death of his father, Springbok rugby player Joost van der Westhuizen.

“He was wearing his dad’s shirt,” says an emotional Amor Vittone. It was a blue shirt with the logo of Joost’s J9 Foundation, which raises awareness and funds for those who suffer from motor neuron disease (MND).

There’s a picture of Joost’s face and his signature on the shirt – and Jordan wanted to wear it to school as a tribute to his dad.

Read more: Joost’s family ‘devastated but strong’ as tributes pour in for rugby legend

Today, Amor is wearing the same shirt, but in green and gold.

“Jordan was strong, saying, ‘I want Pappa to see me.’ Kylie (Joost and Amor’s 10-year-old daughter) is softer,” Amor says. “She stayed home today and we held each other tightly.”

Joost died on Monday afternoon in his home in Dainfern, Johannesburg, surrounded by loved ones. He had been fighting MND for six years.

“It’s as if Jordan took over the role of man of the house within seconds. ‘Mamma, can I make you some tea? Hoe or where can I help?’ He wants to show us he’s strong,” Amor says tearfully.

Read more: ‘You were and always will be my first love’: Heartbroken Amor’s tribute to Joost

She says her ex-husband’s death doesn’t feel real yet. To the world he was a rugby legend, “but to us, Joost was so much more”.

“He was a formidable man. We’ll remember him as the best dad. To me he was a best friend and someone who could always give me advice. He remains my first love. I received my most precious gift, my children, from him.”

The actress and singer thanked South Africans for all the support and kind messages the family has received.

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