Tatum Leigh Abbott kisses her father, Devlyn Abbott. Photo: Facebook
Tatum Leigh Abbott kisses her father, Devlyn Abbott. Photo: Facebook

Durban dad found dead in Thai hotel

By Nabeelah Shaikh Time of article published May 10, 2015

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Durban - He was the man everyone liked, unfailingly friendly and hard-working in the execution of his work as a law enforcement officer for the Hibiscus Coast Municipality.

But when Devlyn Abbott, 41, finally took a much-needed holiday – his first overseas – the father of two died as the result of an accident in his hotel room.

Now family and friends anxiously await news of the repatriation of his remains.

Abbott fell and hit his head in his hotel room in Thailand on Tuesday, according to a police report sent to his family. However, an official autopsy report has not been released.

His brother, Calvin Abbott, said the news of his sudden death had left his family and the community of Port Shepstone devastated.

He said his brother had been on a 10-day holiday and had been expected to return on Thursday.

“Devlyn was such a hardworking man. His friends and I always put pressure on him to take a break and go on a well-deserved holiday.”

Abbott said his brother chose to go to Thailand because one of his friends had been on holiday there and he recommended it. It was also his choice to go on holiday by himself.

Abbott said that while communicating with him on social networks while in Thailand, Devlyn had complained that he wasn’t feeling well on Monday.

“He said that he was going to take some medication. We speak every day and I hadn’t heard from him after this,” said Abbott.

Concerned friends and family contacted his travel agent as well as the hotel to check on him.

“When they went into the hotel room they found him lying there, dead. The family was then informed through the agent,” Abbott said.

He described his brother as a “gentle giant” who was much loved by everyone who knew him.

“My brother and I were extremely close. We have one other brother and the three of us were a very close-knit family. There was never a day that would go by without us communicating with each other. He has two beautiful daughters aged 19 and 22. This is all too much for us to deal with,” he said.

Unsure of when Devlyn’s body would be repatriated, he said that the family was still waiting to hear from authorities and that the funeral would be planned accordingly.

A memorial service will be held for Abbott by the Hibiscus Coast Municipality in Port Shepstone on Wednesday.

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Sunday Tribune

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