PODCAST | My Only Story: Who knew what? Did St Andrew's 'brush aside' warnings about David Mackenzie?

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My Only Story Season 2: Back to School is a podcast series and live investigation. This podcast discusses suicide and sexual abuse, and some people might find it troubling. If anything affects you while listening to this episode, please talk to someone. If you're in South Africa, you can phone the South African Depression and Anxiety Group on 0800 456 789.

After almost three years of unanswered questions, Charl Kruger, the father of the St Andrew's College (SAC) pupil, who took his life at the school in 2018, hopes Thomas' death finally exposes the depth of secrecy at schools.

Haunted by the mystery of not knowing what weighed his son down so heavily that he took his own life, Kruger has been trying to piece together the final years of his son's life.

"My sole agenda in all of this and pursuing this was so that it doesn't happen to your child because I do believe that Thomas was put into a compromising situation where he just thought that the guilt and shame were unfathomable, and that [death] was his only way out," he told News24.

Over the past seven weeks, the My Only Story: Back to School podcast series delved into the circumstances surrounding Thomas' suicide and found that he had a deeply personal bond with his former water polo coach, David Mackenzie.

News24 and My Only Story uncovered a consistent pattern of inappropriate behaviour by Mackenzie through more than 80 000 WhatsApp messages sent by him to Thomas and scores of schoolboys he coached.

The text exchanges revealed how he smoked and drank alcohol with pupils, hosted boys in his flat, and advised one to flirt with a teacher.

In the sixth and final episode of the live investigation, we weave through more of Mackenzie's past and find evidence that reveals the leaders at St Andrew's College were aware of the coach's misdeeds – years before Thomas' death. 

Truth First

If you missed episodes one, two, three, four and five, listen here:

Please continue sending us your stories and tip-offs. You can contact us, completely confidentially, at tips@24.com or message us on WhatsApp or Telegram on 071 382 7030.

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