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An emotional relative had to be carried out of the Town Hall on Wednesday, before the memorial ceremony of a court official stabbed to death last weekend could start. "He had a big heart, and he was never afraid of anything. At that moment when this happened to him he was not afraid," said family member Antoinette Cannon during the service.
Scores of mourners gathered at the city hall to bid a sad farewell to Jacques Martin Louw this week. He engaged easily with other people. He was a hard worker and he loved sport, said Louw's supervisor and friend Khaya Cetywayo. These words were echoed by all the speakers who followed.
Cannon said Louw would be remembered for his light-hearted approach to life, his kindness and good spirit. Louw was murdered in K Street on Saturday according to police spokesperson Captain Mali Govender.
Govender said a witness had reported seeing three men who looked like they were playing in K street on Saturday night. After a while the witness had realised one of the men was still on the ground and, seeing blood, called the police.
The police were called to the scene at about [8.30pm] before an ambulance arrived on the scene to declare the 40-year-old man dead, she said. According to the police, Louw had multiple stab wounds to his upper body. Cetywayo said he had known Louw for three years and that they had become good friends.
He described Louw as having a great personality, who was funny and fun to be around. "He was a people's person and I have never known him to be a violent person," he said. Cetywayo said Louw had started as a volunteer at the local Magistrate's Court and worked his way up.
He had recently been appointed clerk of the court on a permanent basis. Magistrate Ronnie Lesele said he received the tragic news of Louw's passing by voicemail while he was out of town. Lesele praised Louw's skill in languages. He was a linguist.
"Once a person speaks to you in your own language you take notice," he said. Lesele said the community had lost a kind person with a good heart.
"He was not just a colleague, he was a friend," said Lesele. A relative who had began sobbing uncontrollably before the start of the service ended up being carried out of the hall as she struggled to make it to the door.
Two men have arrested and charged with murder. Govender said the motive was still not known. Louw will be buried tomorrow at the Reunion Church in Albany Road.