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.
firstname.lastname@example.org - Cape Argus
Wisey Hlatshwayo, wrote
This is very sad and tragic. It really makes me do my self introspection and value my own children. May God give Marko strength to go through this difficult period and the deceased souls rest in peace.
Kholiswa Leeu, wrote
Condolences Marko, what a said loss. You must learn to forgive and forget and I dont think your wife has done this intentionally and its not about affordabilty also, I still believe it has to do with Post Natal Depression, and I've been through it and it was so bad and if it was'nt for my older kids I would have given my baby away, i could not handle it and it varies from person to person, so people must stop blaming the poor woman as if they knew what was going in on her mind.
MARLENA SLAVERSE, wrote
How sad, may the Lord comfort this father and the rest of the family at this tragic time. May he find comfort in the gentleness of the Lord's touch and find solace in the beautiful memories of his family. Oh, so sad! To the people who say when someone is depressed they don't care, be aware that sometimes the person is NOT EVEN AWARE, .... but people do not write your own stories, we do not know the ins and outs! Judge not, let ye be judged. God bless you all.
MARLENA SLAVERSE, wrote
How sad, may the Lord comfort this father and the rest of the family at this tragic time. May he find comfort in the gentleness of the Lord's touch and find solace in the beautiful memories of his family. Oh, so sad!
This is so sad but nothing is that bad to kill yourself and your family. I am 38years old i had 5 miscarriages my husband had a affair,I found a recording of him and a young girl having sex but yet I am walking strong.I went for help I chose to live for my kids.
Post natal depression is horrible condition that sometimes push mothers over the edge. Having 2 babies basically is extremely tough to handle and if suffering from post-depression will seem even harder. These people came to south Africa for a better life and maybe it just wasn’t looking that way for this poor women and in the end she made an unfortunate decision. RIP
Condolences Marko!!! The Lord will hold your hand through this difficult time! It's a very painfull experience!!
Tragic. Had a friend with post-natal depression. It is debilitating for the person who has it. So very very often overlooked at Government health institutions. Is it not possible she was NOT committing suicide but could have had severe stomach paid (as she had been complaining of) and maybe collapsed on the line for just bent over .... Marko please know that you, and your family, wife and blessed children are in our prayers.
Lesirela Letsebe_Mogorwane, wrote
I am a new resident at Eesterevier, and a regular user of the Eesterevier's busy train station near where this accident happened. And I had a distant glance at the casualties and what sprang to my mind immediately after hearing that they were a mother and two minor children was: family problems! And being a husband and a father myself, I immediately asked myself whether if indeed the cause was family problems, a man in their lives was the cause of their suicide and murder. I immediately also asked myself whether there is anything that I am currently or have been doing to my wife and children that could drive them to such a drastic and irreversible decision. I am now doing self-introspection, checking my deeds and misdeeds, commissions and omissions as a husband and father. And I have begun to be sensitive to how I handle my family and now appreciate my wife and children the greatest. My sympathies are with my devastated brother Marko Masese, his family and in-laws. May the deceased’s souls rest in peace!
Condolences, what a sad loss.
To wanna be a father stop looking for remedies to make babies trust God for one.and i just want to tell u it is easy to judge when u are not a parent by saying if u can't afford them give them away.we as human beings should stop judging.i was judged years ago by my best friend i just told her that she must wait till she is a mom herself.it happened nd she went through a lot more then what i went thru.so let just pray for this family.
Daddy's Girl, wrote
So very sad. Unfortunately when people are depressed they do not care about the consequences. My heart goes out to Marko as he has been left behind and the pain will go on for a long time.
Sad, all my sympathy, wees sterk my man
How does he know that she deliberately walked in front of the train with both her children? It may have just been an accident. It could also have been what many have already suggested, post-natal depression, a very serious and most often very misunderstood condition. Either way this poor father is left with out answers and without his family. I think it may comfort him a little though if it turned out to be an accident. If it was a suicide he could spend a long time torturing himself with questions he'll never get the answers for and blaming himself for not seeing the signs before it was too late. When something like this happens the people left behind always go through the "should of, would of, could of" stage trying to make sense of a senseless and painful event.
My prayers are with you in this time of grief.. Loosing children and a wife is not an easy thing.. I would like to agree with anonymous 0101.. She was probably suffering from postpartum depression.. And alot of people are in the dark about it.. My fiance also suffered the same depression..
i am sorry to hear your news. She may of had baby blues and depression and never told anyone . It is common after giving birth that woman can go through this . RIP
My condolences for your tragic loss.
Vongani B, wrote
@wanna be father...dont give up bra...i tried for 4 years and finally happened...try this menu...mix mageu and vanilla custard and drink beware of gaining weight
sounds like she had psot natal depression... think thsts what its called... but its very srious and unfortunately does not get identified at overcrowded government hosptials.. too sad...
Many women go into a depression after giving birth. This is indeed a sad story. We may ask why didnt the husband go with her to the clinic for her check up, etc. But we shouldnt judge. May their souls rest in peace.