Young city pupil dies in class­room


“RIP MY beau­ti­ful soul. Mommy will al­ways love you. My beau­ti­ful princess Nayla, I will never for­get you.”

This was the mes­sage posted on Face­book by the mother of a young Kim­ber­ley girl who died af­ter suf­fer­ing an asthma at­tack while sit­ting in her Grade 5 class­room.

Mass hys­te­ria erupted at En­deavor Pri­mary School on Fri­day morn­ing af­ter 11-year-old Nayla Adams was de­clared dead.

Nayla’s great-grand­fa­ther, Percy Ben­jamin, who lives in a house di­rectly across from the school, told the DFA yes­ter­day that he no­ticed a com­mo­tion at the school on Fri­day morn­ing but at first thought noth­ing of it.

“I ar­rived home and no­ticed a lot of peo­ple gath­er­ing at the fence. I won­dered what was hap­pen­ing, as I no­ticed two am­bu­lances in­side the school premises. I went closer and some­one said that there was a lit­tle girl who was strug­gling to breathe. My daugh­ter then came to­wards me and screamed ‘she’s gone, can’t they do any­thing more for her?’

“Chaos erupted as teach­ers, com­mu­nity mem­bers and fel­low pupils, who all came closer to see Nayla, started scream­ing and cry­ing at once.

“It was mass mass hys­te­ria, with two teach­ers faint­ing as a re­sult of shock fol­low­ing her death. They had to re­ceive med­i­cal treat­ment,” Ben­jamin said.

He added that Nayla was a “sweet child” who was very pop­u­lar among her peers.

She had ap­par­ently been tak­ing med­i­ca­tion for asthma.

Nayla’s mother, Robyn Chantell Adams, was yes­ter­day still too shocked to speak about the in­ci­dent. She had, how­ever, on Fri­day af­ter­noon made the fol­low­ing post on Face­book: “RIP my beau­ti­ful soul. Mommy will al­ways love you. My beau­ti­ful princess Nayla, I will never for­get you.”

The post was met with nu­mer­ous mes­sages of con­do­lences and sup­port, in­clud­ing the fol­low­ing post by Candice On­tong: “Robyn I can’t imag­ine how you must be feel­ing if I’m feel­ing this way now, lost for words, heartbroken, hurt, try­ing to un­der­stand why her? Why now? She’s still so young . . . but only God knows and only God has the an­swers.

“I pray that you find com­fort, heal­ing and un­der­stand­ing and know that God will never leave you nor for­sake you . . . it’s never easy los­ing a child and no one is pre­pared for it . . . God be with you in this dif­fi­cult time . . . RIP Nayla! You will al­ways be in my heart. I will never for­get the looks you al­ways gave and your shy smile . . . love you al­ways An­gel.”

The North­ern Cape Depart­ment of Ed­u­ca­tion con­firmed that it was “mourn­ing the un­timely death of a Grade 5 pupil at En­deav­our Pri­mary School in Kim­ber­ley”.

“Her death came as a real shock, af­ter she died of nat­u­ral causes on Fri­day morn­ing in the class­room,” depart­ment spokesper­son, Ge­of­frey van der Merwe, said yes­ter­day.

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