Durban - Gary Mackay died a hero, trying to protect his wife and two children at their Duncan Road, Westville, home on Saturday.
Three intruders shot him in his abdomen, before fleeing with items from the house.
The 35-year-old web company manager heard noises in his home at about 4am. Curious, he went to check what was going on downstairs. He was confronted by the three armed men and after a struggle, he was shot.
His wife, Symone, and his two children, aged 19 months and four years, were awake upstairs.
After shooting Mackay, the criminals held Symone at knifepoint while they stole goods from the house.
His father-in-law, Orlando Pereira, said everyone was in shock.
“Gary was an active, social person and to have this happen to him is a tragedy. He was a loving father and husband who always put the needs of his family first. It is so hard for us to accept that he is gone.”
According to Pereira, Mackay had an exciting month ahead of him.
“He planned on working on a special project at work and the family were going on holiday to the South Coast this month.
“At this stage all the family know is that he was attending to a noise, there was a struggle and he was shot. We are hopeful that the police will find the men who did this and that justice will be served,” he said.
Pereira said while Westville North was a quiet suburb, it had become a hot spot.
He said people needed to be vigilant and have security measures in place.
“People are not safe in their homes anymore. The men who did this did not even have any remorse and went upstairs to take my daughter’s possessions,” he said.
He could not disclose what had been stolen because police were still investigating.
In provincial crime statistics revealed on Friday, murders in the area increased from two cases (April 2014-March 2015) to nine (April 2015-March 2016).
Westville SAPS is investigating the case.