'They died in the worst possible way' - pastor at Van Breda family memorial

By Hilda Van Dyk
05 February 2015

Martin, Teresa and Rudi van Breda "are in heaven", says pastor at memorial service.

The death of Martin, Teresa and Rudi van Breda touched the nation. So said pastor Willem Badenhorst this morning during the memorial service for the couple and their eldest son, who were killed last week with an axe in their home in the exclusive De Zalze Estate in Stellenbosch.

The memorial service took place at the NG Church in Moreletapark, Pretoria, where the family lived for a long time before emigrating to Australia a few years ago.

The Van Bredas' two youngest children, Marli and Henri,  didn't attend the service.

Willem said the one thing we saw in the past few dreadful days was that the "finish line could come at any moment".

"Death is so final. It tears us from our relationships. It tears us apart from one another. Death has a message. Death points a finger. The question death asks is are you ready for death?" he said to gathered mourners.

Willem said Martin, Teresa and Rudi suffered the worst possible death and that it was the "biggest tragedy ever experienced" by the Van Breda and Du Toit (Teresa's family) families. But they now had to look to the future because Martin, Teresa and Rudi were in heaven.

About Marli, who is still in hospital after suffering a head wound, Willem said, "Marli, you can't hear us now. You'll hear later when God wakes you from your temporary sleep."

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