Murdered PE teacher's husband googled eulogy

Johannesburg – Parts of the eulogy the husband of murdered teacher Jayde Panayiotou delivered at her funeral appear to rely heavily on another one available online.

The eulogy, delivered by Christopher Panayiotou at his wife's funeral in Port Elizabeth on Tuesday, contains phrases used in a tribute written by Charles Atkins called "My Sweet Wife's Eulogy" and dated October 2010. 

In his eulogy, Atkins said with "absolute confidence" that his wife Jennifer was not gone.

"She is everywhere: Jennifer rides the wind like an elemental force. She can be experienced in the blooming of the flowers of the field. She is the pink-white blossoms of the cherry tree. She is the crest and spindrift of breaking gulf waves. She is the fertile soil of the woods. She is the enduring ember of your fire on a cold winter’s night."


Christopher Panayiotou said: "Jayde is not gone; she is everywhere. Jayde resides in the wind like an elemental force. She can be experienced in the blooming of flowers; she is the yellow in daffodils of her favourite flower. She is the crest in every breaking wave, she is the fertile soil; she is the enduring embers of the fire."

Panayiotou said he was honoured to have been her husband for 11 years and was "staggered by her sudden passing".

She was abducted outside her Kabega Park home on Tuesday, April 28, while waiting for her lift to the school where she worked. She was later found dead on the outskirts of a township in Uitenhage.

Atkins, who had been with his wife for 10 years, was also “staggered by her sudden passing”.

"She made me feel like the luckiest man on earth... I’ve never quite figured out why she gave her heart to me, as I’m not rich or handsome," said Atkins.

Panayiotou expressed similar sentiments: "She made me feel like the luckiest man alive and I never quite figured out why she gave her heart to me."

Love and respect

Atkins’ wife Jennifer was a qualified chef who taught culinary arts and a "master baker who was so good; she could have made Mahatma Gandhi break a fast".

He said she was as incredibly versatile, capable, and deep person.

Panayiotou, in turn, described his teacher wife as a master chef and master baker who could have made "Mahatma Gandhi break a fast". She was also incredibly versatile, capable, and deep.

Atkins said during his time with his wife that he witnessed a "profound transformation and deepening of love and respect" for Jennifer's father. Panayiotou said he "grew a profound and deep love and respect for her family, who became my own".

"Today should not be one of sadness - although her passing is truly tragic, it should be a celebration of life, for one of God’s finest creations," Atkins said.

Panayiotou said: “Today should not be one of sadness, although her passing is truly tragic, it should be a celebration of life for one of God’s greatest creations."


Two people have been arrested in connection with Jayde Panayiotou's abduction and murder, which appeared to have been deliberate.

One of them, Thando Siyoli, 31, appeared in the Port Elizabeth Magistrate’s Court on Thursday. Details had emerged that a substantial amount of money was paid to kill her.

The other arrested man, aged 28, is a close family member known to News24. He cannot be named until he appears in court on Monday.

Lawyer Alwyn Griebenow, who is representing the close family member, said he was not aware of the eulogy's origins.

"I can't comment on that... it's news to me," he told News24.

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