The family of a 14-year-old boy from Gauteng was plunged into mourning after the teenager was shot dead in an attack on a farm in the province on Saturday.
Jayden Louw died when a group of heavily armed men descended on his family’s farm just outside Bapsfontein. RNews earlier reported that five men struck at around 13:00 with two vehicles, a black Mazda 3 with a Mozambican number plate and a white BMW 1 series.
According to Amanda Botha, a longtime friend of the Louw family, Jayden and his mother, Lyall (50), as well as his younger brother, Damian (10), were at home during the incident.
“Lyall said that she was lying on the couch when she heard a knock on the door. She got up and opened the door a little because she didn’t know the men.”
Botha says that the men were apparently looking for Lyall’s stepdaughter, Tanya (28). She also lives with the family on the farm and was not at home at the time.
“Lyall says she noticed the firearms in the men’s hands moments later and immediately started fighting back and trying to keep the men out of the house. However, they forced open the door and entered the house moments later.
“After that they roughed up Lyall and forced her to show them where the safe was. After taking everything they could, they forced her to take them to a second safe in the house.”
At that stage, Lyall apparently shouted loudly for her two sons to get out of the house and flee.
“Lyall says she can’t really remember exactly what happened in those moments; she only knows two shots were fired and her son bled.”
Botha says that Lyall begged the attackers to allow her to take her son to a hospital.
“You can take everything, I just want to get my son to the hospital,” Lyall pleaded with the men, according to Botha.
However, the thugs reportedly told Lyall that her son would be okay and they fled the scene on foot soon after.
“When the thugs left, a terrified Lyall immediately loaded Jayden into the vehicle and raced with him to the Netcare Linmed hospital in Benoni.”
Jayden’s father, Duan, was at work during the tragedy. He was driving a truck when he was informed of the incident and immediately arranged for someone to take over the truck from him so that he could go to his son in hospital.
However, Jayden died a few hours later in the hospital.
“We received the heartbreaking call on Saturday around 15:40. I do not know what to say. This is the most painful pain our family has ever had to go through, it is really very difficult for all of us,” says Ché Smit, Jayden’s uncle.
“I just hope the men responsible for this are caught as soon as possible. They ruined a family’s life.”
Llewellyn Hemmens, AfriForum’s regional head for security in the North region, was one of those who responded to the incident and Hemmens was at the scene himself.
“This is a terribly traumatic event for the family and the news has shaken the entire community. We offered trauma counseling to the family.”
Smit describes Jayden as a “star child”.
“He was a standout, he got A’s in everything. No matter what he undertook, you could be sure that he would make a success of it.
“He was incredibly sporty and musical; you just have to see all his medals and certificates,” says Smit.
Botha tells that Jayden was a chattering young man; always positive and incredibly fond of cooking.
“He wanted to be a chef one day. He loved cooking and being busy in the kitchen. He really was so special and always made us all laugh.
“On bad days he would just come and sit with you. He had a way of making everything better with his cheerful company. He could genuinely make you laugh.
“Jayden will be terribly missed,” says Botha.
According to Smit, members of the police’s forensic department were at the scene on Saturday and investigating officers visited the family on Sunday.
“However, we have not yet received any further feedback.”
Lt. Col. Mavela Masondo, police spokesperson, says a case of robbery and murder has been filed with the police.
“The investigation is ongoing and no one has yet been arrested in connection with the incident.
“We appeal to anyone with information that can help catch the suspects to please call the nearest police station or Stop Crime on 08600 10111.”