Ka­roo com­mu­ni­ty sad­de­ned by the pas­sing of Pe­ter Wa­ter­mey­er

Graaff-Reinet Advertiser - - Graaff-reinet -

GRAAFF-REINET — It is with gre­at sad­ness that the Nieu-bet­hes­da and Graaff­rei­net com­mu­ni­ties le­ar­ned of the sud­den pas­sing of Pe­ter Wa­ter­mey­er on F­ri­day, Oc­to­ber 20, in Graaff-reinet at the age of 86.

Born in 1930 and ha­ving spent his child­hood on the fa­mi­ly farm, S­chans­kraal, in the S­neeu­berg, Pe­ter li­ved his li­fe in c­lo­se con­necti­on with the two t­hings he lo­ved most: fel­low hu­man-kind and the land.

Soon af­ter com­ple­ting a 2-y­e­ar di­plo­ma cour­se at Groot­fon­tein a­gri­cul­tu­ral col­le­ge, he went to a farm ne­ar Kei Mouth, w­he­re he met Lil­le­mor, who was to be his fait­hful wi­fe for 54 y­e­ars. With their three young child­ren, they re­tur­ned to his be­lo­ved Ka­roo in the mid-70’s, w­he­re he ab­sor­bed him­self in e­co­lo­gi­cal­ly sound far­ming met­hods - a gre­at cal­ling of his. In 1997 Pe­ter and Lil­le­mor mo­ved to Graaff­rei­net w­he­re he star­ted a small bu­si­ness, in­vol­ving a­not­her of his pas­si­ons - wor­king wood with his hands.

Pe­ter Wa­ter­mey­er em­bo­died ser­vant-he­ar­ted­ness. He pos­ses­sed a far hig­her set of va­lu­es than the ma­te­ri­al trap­pings of mo­dern day li­fe. He was as con­stant as the Nort­hern S­tar and, in the words of his son, Ke­vin, “Gai­ned re­al strength from doing t­hings for ot­hers.” Pe­ter could of­ten be seen ri­ding his bi­cy­cle past the dam through the park e­ar­ly in the mor­ning. His re­spect for the cre­a­ti­on, for this beau­ti­ful land and for pe­op­le e­ner­gi­sed him and kept him strong in bo­dy and mind rig­ht until the end.

Their mo­ve to town ga­ve Pe­ter and Lil­le­mor the op­por­tu­ni­ty to ser­ve on an e­ven gre­a­ter le­vel.

In Graaff-reinet he be­ca­me in­te­gral­ly in­vol­ved with his church and the bo­w­ling club, and al­ways ma­de ti­me to fix fur­ni­tu­re for friends, to pro­vi­de a ho­me from ho­me for ma­ny, in­clu­ding his gran­d­child­ren and their friends at bo­ar­ding school.

E­ven though hard of he­a­ring, Pe­ter would al­ways stop to ask and he­ar how your day was. The tri­bu­tes that ha­ve pou­red in­to Lil­le­mor and the fa­mi­ly ha­ve co­me from farm wor­kers, pe­trol at­ten­dants, pro­mi­nent bu­si­ness pe­op­le, fel­low far­mers, school child­ren, pro­fes­si­o­nals and folk from the Pro­tecti­ve Work­pla­ce, w­he­re he ser­ved - Pe­ter Wa­ter­mey­er was a man well­lo­ved who held no jud­ge­ment.

A fa­mi­ly friend said, ‘Pe­ter and his fa­mi­ly did t­hings rig­ht. They can ha­ve no re­grets.’ Pe­ter Wa­ter­mey­er le­a­ves his wi­fe Lil­le­mor, child­ren - Su­san from New Ze­a­land, Ke­vin from Zuur­plaats, Carl from Ca­pe Town and 6 be­lo­ved gran­d­child­ren.

T­ho­mas Moo­re said, “Hu­mi­li­ty, that low, sweet root, from which all he­a­ven­ly vir­tu­es shoot.” This com­mu­ni­ty has lost a hum­ble, ser­vant-he­ar­ted and much-lo­ved man. Tru­ly, a man of he­a­ven­ly vir­tu­es.

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