Family, friends and the community said their last goodbyes to Rene-Tracey Roman when she was buried at Muizenberg cemetery on Saturday April 1.
Rene-Tracey was reported missing on Friday March 10 after a frantic search for her by family and friends. She was supposed to return home after buying a packet of chips from a shop down the street but she never made it to the shop and never returned home.
After a week and a half, on Tuesday March 21, Human Right’s Day, Rene-Tracey’s decomposed body was found in a wendy house on a property just two doors down from her own home in St Agatha Crescent, St Montague Village.
Hundreds of people filled the New Apostolic Church in Lavender Hill on Saturday for the 13-year-old’s funeral.
Speaking at the service, Apostle Peter Lambert said Rene-Tracey wanted to be a teacher and preferred to sit in class during intervals to help her fellow classmates.
“She loved school and had a dream. She had ambition. That was taken away from her. She was taken away from her family but the family can take solace in the fact that she is with her heavenly Father,” said Apostle Lambert.
Lavender Hill resident Fatiema Rasdien said Rene-Tracey’s death has brought the community together.
“To bury a child is sad in itself, to bury a child who was murdered is even sadder. It is unfortunate that a child had to die for a community to come together and for the plight of our children to be heard. Rene-Tracey’s death has raised awareness around child safety and that is something that needs to be addressed. It takes a community to raise a child, and this child’s (Rene-Tracey) death will hopefully bring that spirit back to our community,” said Ms Rasdien
Teachers, pupils and staff at Levana Primary School, where Rene-Tracey was a pupil, also honoured her with two separate memorial services that were held at the school on Thursday morning and evening.
Pupils cried as they laid out cards and posters they had made for their friend. The choir, which Rene-Tracey belonged to, sang and some of her classmates danced to pay tribute to her.
Neighbour Andrew Plaatjie was arrested for Rene-Tracey’s murder. He made his second appearance at the Wynberg Magistrate’s Court yesterday, Tuesday April 4 << WE MUST CONFIRM AND UPDATE.