‘We’ll forgive the killers’ - Murdered Shongweni Valley couple’s family say they cannot harbour bitterness

2013-11-12 00:00

THE son of a Shongweni Valley couple whose murder during a home invasion last week spread fear through their community said he is prepared to forgive his parents’ killers.

The Witness reported last week that an elderly married couple, Hester and John Noble, had been beaten and then strangled during a home invasion.

Their bodies were discovered by a neighbour on Thursday morning.

John was strangled with a piece of wire and Hester with the tube from her oxygen tank. The couple’s house had been ransacked.

The Nobles had just celebrated their 50th anniversary and the family were looking forward to celebrating Hester’s 70th birthday next year.

Instead of harbouring bitterness, the couple’s family are preaching love and forgiveness.

They said they wanted the fugitives to be arrested and appropriate justice to be served.

The couple lived alone and their children, John Noble Jnr (47) and Tracy Rowe (49), live in Knysna in the Western Cape with their spouses.

Neighbours had initially reported that Tracy lived overseas.

John Jnr said if he could see his parents’ killers he would forgive them because he had also recently forgiven criminals who had caused harm to his family.

He told The Witness that his daughter had recently been a victim of crime and had to come face-to-face with the perpertrators and he felt he had to forgive them.

In a Facebook post on Friday, John Jnr wrote: “... God’s peace surrounds us as a family. It does encourage me to urge everyone I know to reach out and love those around you, a gentle touch, an encouraging word and an act of kindness can reverse the ravaging violence that is gripping our country. Please hear me, only love can heal our land. A love revolution will heal our land and will eventually heal the hurting people that hurt others”.

John Jnr and Tracy said their parents were simple folk who were hardworking, generous with their time and down to earth.

“They operated their small engineering company from their home in Shongweni after retiring from Gauteng.

“My Dad worked at one company for his whole life, working in the evenings to pay the bills. My parents had a sound relationship with their staff and ensured that they would have some care after their death; this tragic incident unfortunately means the loss of two more jobs,” he said.

The couple leave behind seven grandchildren and two great grandchildren.

John Jnr believes that people need to be prioritised above material things.

“It is not too late to heal our land and if you act out in love then my parents will not have been murdered in vain,” he wrote.

John Jnr said his parents’ neighbours had offered a R50 000 reward leading to any information that could result in the arrest and conviction of the suspects.

At a meeting held in Hillcrest last week, the community spoke of their fears that the Nobles may have known their killers.

Police reservist and a neighbour of the couple Dave Leslie said they had started with patrols and other preventative measures in the neighbourhood to curb crime.

The police have not made any arrests yet.

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