A devastated father is still battling to understand why his wife chose to take her own life and that of his daughter and six-day-old baby boy, the son he had always wanted.
On Tuesday morning, 35-year-old Nyarai Chiwandire, holding her 16-month-old daughter Rosemary and infant son Allan, walked in front of an oncoming train near Eerste River station. All three died.
Four days after the tragedy her husband Marko Masese, 31, is still in shock and trying to come to terms with what happened.
“It’s unbelievable what she did. I’ve been crying the whole day already after seeing my kids at the mortuary,” said Masese.
He identified them on Thursday morning.
Before leaving the house on Tuesday, Chiwandire told her husband she was going for a check-up at the hospital after having post-birth pains.
She had given birth to Allan at Somerset Hospital six days prior to the incident.
She slipped out while her husband was asleep, taking Allan and Rosemary.
“She said she’s going for a check-up at the clinic… little did I know my wife was going to kill my family. She didn’t even say goodbye,” said the shattered father.
The family moved to SA from Zimbabwe four years ago.
Masese said they had been married for the same period, and after having a girl he had longed for a son.
“She was due the end of February and while she was pregnant we went to the doctor to check the sex of the baby, but he told us he couldn’t see because the baby’s legs were closed.
“I had gone home already from the hospital when she gave birth. I called her the next morning and she told me we had a son. I was happier than ever before in my life,” said Masese.
When he visited her at the hospital, she had pleaded with him to take her home but he advised her to follow the doctor’s orders and stay as the baby had been born a few weeks prematurely.
When they returned home at the weekend, Masese said they had family over to celebrate his son’s birth.
“I had gone to the mall to buy those expensive bottles and food and everybody was happy,” he said.
By then, Chiwandire had already started complaining about her pain but insisted she wanted to cook something “special” for her husband.
After she failed to return on Tuesday, Masese assumed his wife had been admitted to hospital but could not call her as she had left her cellphone at home. He called family members, but no one had heard from her.
Family friend Sharon Tapeira described the mother as a “very quiet” person and said she would never have believed she would hurt her children.
“It was so unexpected. Our daughters used to play together and hers would call me ‘mamma’ sometimes,” said Tapeira. She added that all the pictures on Chiwandire’s phone had been deleted as well as some documentation.
On Wednesday morning, Tapeira informed Masese of the train accident and he went to the police.
“I can forgive her but I can’t forget. It will tick in my heart forever,” he said.