Nathaniel Julies, a 16-year-old Down Syndrome teenager was shot and killed, allegedly by the police, in Eldorado Park last week. Picture: Supplied.
Nathaniel Julies, a 16-year-old Down Syndrome teenager was shot and killed, allegedly by the police, in Eldorado Park last week. Picture: Supplied.

Nathaniel Julies’ death unites grieving Eldorado Park community

By Boitumelo Metsing Time of article published Sep 4, 2020

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Johannesburg - Tears may have flowed but the memorial service for Nathaniel Julies demonstrated how much his death had united the Eldorado Park community.

Last night’s service honouring the life of the 16-year-old who had Down syndrome attracted both the elderly and young children from the area.

Opening speaker, the Reverend Hattingh, shared words of comfort with the family and relatives. The pastor went on to encourage the family to draw comfort in God.

He went on to applaud the unity the community has shown since the passing of Nathaniel, stating that South Africans have also responded positively in offering their support.

Teary Mitchel Jonosky, a relative, described the teenager as a peaceful, loving soul.

“We still find it difficult to come to terms with his passing. We are experiencing this great deal of pain that doesn’t want to fade away.

“As a family we have lost an asset and a good, loving boy, but we take one day at a time and we are still hopeful that justice will take place and those responsible will account.”

Nathaniel was allegedly shot dead by police.

A community member at the memorial, Melvin Maynard, expressed his dismay at the police for allegedly shooting the teenager.

“Police were very unfair to shoot at him in that manner considering that he was a special kid.”

Maynard detailed Nathaniel’s life in the Eldorado Park community.

“That boy was always laughing, he liked people. He was a sweet boy who liked nice things. He was always dressed nice.”

Maynard went on to describe Nathaniel as someone who enjoyed playing soccer and the arts.

“It’s the little things that he appreciated that will always make him be remembered among the community. A good soul who loved food and he was abruptly taken away from us, and it’s devastating.”

Pastor Markus Jacobs delivered a moving sermon, where he called for the nation to respect the name Nathaniel Julius.

“Have compassion for people, we want law and order to return in the name of Jesus. Order must return to the community, we must put value to Nathaniel’s life.”

Jacobs pleaded with the SAPS leadership to clean up the Eldorado Park police station to restore peace in the community.

Teenagers filled a nearby truck with placards from community members conveying messages of support to the family and calling for justice.

Earlier in the day, one of the suspects, Sergeant Vorster Netshiongolo, who appeared in court, was charged with defeating the ends of justice and being an accessory to murder.

Netshiongolo was remanded in custody with Sergeant Simon Ndyalvane and Constable Caylene Whiteboy.

All three suspects are expected to make their next court appearance on September 10.

Nathaniel will be laid to rest on Saturday.

The Star

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