Tuesday, 10 February 2009

What happened to her?

Barbara Cole

February 09 2009 at 11:27AM

When Durbanite Mark Hume arrives at Bloemfontein High Court on Monday, he hopes he will finally get answers to questions that have long haunted him and his family.

In October 2007 his wife Lynne, 48, set off as usual from their Ballito home to work. It was the last time he or their daughters, Samantha, 20, and Kirsty, 23 saw the popular estate agent alive.

When she failed to keep a business appointment, everyone in the office "was in a panic" not knowing where she was. … and she failed to come home.

Then the police arrived to check whether Hume, 50, owned a Volvo S60 car, which had been found burnt at the side of the road near Kestell in the Free State.

'I need to have proper closure'

It contained a body that was so badly burnt that the gender could not be immediately established. Two cartridges were found at the scene.

"We were in shock. You felt that it could not be true. It did not feel right," Hume recalled.

Then, last January, after a nightmare wait, DNA results came in, the family learned that the body was Lynne.

When murder accused, information technology consultant and former pastor Muziwendoda Kunene, goes on trial at Bloemfontein High Court, the details of what happened to Hume will begin to unravel. Kunene, 46, also faces charges of kidnapping and fraud.

The case is set down for six weeks and a string of witnesses, including Mark and Samantha, will be called to give evidence.

"I really don't want to go, but there are too many unanswered questions and I need to have proper closure," he said.

"And Lynne's parents also need to know what happened. Her father Arthur is 83 and her mother, Bunty, 75 and they have taken strain. Lynne was the pride of their life."

He does not want his daughters to attend court either, but said that he and his wife had always been honest with their children and wanted them to have the truth.

"And we all want to be there for each other."

A month after the body was identified, and as part of the closure, 12 members of the family travelled to Morgan Bay in the Eastern Cape, to scatter some of Hume's remains in the sea and to place others in a casket under a concrete bench facing the sea.

"Lynne absolutely loved that place. Now she has got the sun on her face and we left her to rest in peace."

The family has just had its second Christmas without her.

"They say that time heals but I would say you just learn how to handle things a little bit better," said Hume.

"It's very sad. There is always an undercurrent of sadness all the time."

Mark Hume has now changed careers.

He sold the estate agency business as it was not the same without his wife.

The couple married in l980 and Hume remembers how he told his future mother-in-law: "I'm going to marry this woman."

After living in Pietermaritzburg for 20 years, the family moved to Ballito where they set up a husband-and-wife business under the Pam Golding umbrella.

While Hume handled commercial property, his wife dealt with rentals and she was also trying to branch out into the holiday market.

A very good people's person, everyone loved to talk to her. She could listen to people's problems and give advice, he said.

She was also trusting and took people on face value-but, at the same time, she was also a good business woman.

Kirsty said a huge gap had been left in the family "and it will never be replaced and she will never be forgotten."

Her mom was "my best friend, my role model, my support system, and so, so much more … This is the worst thing I could ever have imagined would happen to our family", she said.

This article was originally published on page 1 of Daily News on February 09, 2009


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