Fam­ily re­lives storm tragedy

The Mercury - - NEWS - Ber­nadette Wol­huter

AT LEAST four peo­ple are still miss­ing after a mas­sive storm rav­aged KwaZulu-Natal on Tues­day and, as their loved ones wait with bated breath for news, Brenda Scriven’s fam­ily sends them their love and strength.

Scriven was washed away by flood­wa­ters dur­ing a storm in July last year.

De­spite an ex­ten­sive search, she was never found.

Yes­ter­day, her daugh­ter Tami Alves, told The Mer­cury it had been a “a very hard cou­ple of days” for her and her fam­ily. She had seen footage of the SAPS Search and Res­cue of­fi­cers look­ing for the vic­tims of this week’s disas­ter.

“It breaks my heart, it brings back mem­o­ries of be­ing in the ex­act same sit­u­a­tion so many peo­ple, from so many walks of life, are in now,” she said. “We know how dif­fi­cult it is. We know they’re still hold­ing out hope, we know what that’s like.

“The Search and Res­cue guys are ab­so­lutely phe­nom­e­nal. Have faith that they are do­ing their best,” she said.

Alves’ fam­ily had been in con­tact with the unit, to of­fer any as­sis­tance they could. “When they were search­ing for our mom, their van was un­der­stocked and so we’ve been try­ing to make sure that they’ve got ev­ery­thing they need, too.”

She said what those af­fected were go­ing through, was in­cred­i­bly tough.

“We were very for­tu­nate in that our fam­ily is ex­cep­tion­ally strong and very close and the out­pour­ing of sup­port that we re­ceived from the com­mu­nity, helped us so much.”

Tues­day’s storm claimed at least 14 lives. Among them were 18-month old Hope Maphumulo and her 3-year-old sis­ter, Nol­wazi. Search and Res­cue of­fi­cers re­cov­ered their bod­ies near the Isipingo canal, yes­ter­day. Their mother is still miss­ing. So are Nomthandazo Chili, 14, from Fol­weni, and 22month old Okuhle Kweyama, from uM­lazi D Sec­tion.

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