Shots shatter suburban quiet

2011-07-02 00:00

“THIS man came here to embarrass my family by killing himself in my home.”

This is what a Howick businessman said as he stood at the corner of his house looking at the lifeless body of his business partner, Alwyn Durow (58), yesterday afternoon. A revolver and cartridge casings were at the scene of the suicide.

Police spokesperson Captain Lolly Moodley confirmed that Durow shot himself. He said the business partner’s maid found the body on the veranda after hearing the gunshot. He said the owners of the house were not at home.

Durow, who co-owned Almik Funeral Suppliers in Howick, shot himself in the head on the veranda of his partner’s house in Maren Road at about 11 am.

Why Durow shot himself is unclear. It is also unclear why he drove his grey Fiat Uno from Ashburton outside Pietermaritzburg to Howick to commit suicide at his partner’s house. Police said they believe he had financial problems, which might be related to the business.

A source said he heard a gunshot at about 11 am. He went to investigate and found Durow lying dead on the veranda.

“After the shot I was called by the neighbour to see what had happened. When I got there I saw Ally (Durow) lying dead,” said the source.

As the Weekend Witness team entered the property the owner asked the police to refuse us access. He refused to be interviewed and said his traumatised wife was in the house and could not comment.

Neighbours were standing astonished trying to see over the fence to get a look at the body, which was draped with a blue sheet.

Passers-by stopped at the sight of the mortuary van and four police vehicles parked on the quiet suburban street. When told what had happened they were shocked and scurried away.

The mortuary workers swiftly loaded the body into their van and left the scene.

It is believed that Durow and his partner have run a coffin-making business for the past two years.

His nephew, who refused to be named, said Durow had been running a mechanical business and had just got involved in Almik Funeral Suppliers. He was shocked at the news of his uncle’s death.

Durow’s brother declined to comment on the possible reasons for his brother’s death.

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