Friends and family of Fabrice Nbombashi, the car guard killed in a horror crash which took six lives in Plumstead two weeks ago, yesterday described him as “a man of the people” at a service to celebrate his life.
Nbombashi’s body will be flown to his home country of the Democratic Republic of Congo next week for burial, but yesterday about 100 people gathered to bid their friend farewell at the service at the Muizenberg Civic Centre.
Nbombashi was killed on January 15, when a car carrying five men ploughed into him outside the Chilli Bar, where he worked as a car guard.
All five occupants of the Honda were also killed.
Nbombashi is the last of the six to be buried.
His coffin was carried into the civic centre by a group of his friends, to the sounds of a young woman’s wailing.
The service was simple, with no flowers, and just a small photograph placed at the base of the wooden coffin.
Much of the service was conducted in French, with sections translated into English.
Nbombashi’s uncle, Mathieu Yenga, who lives in Cape Town, broke down in tears as he got up to speak. But he composed himself long enough to thank Cape Town and Congolese friends at the service.
Ellen Fedele, a witness to the crash, said: “I never had the privilege of knowing this young man, but he is now a part of my heart.”
Friend Jonathan Makonga read a poem, before looking towards the coffin and saying: “Rest in peace Fabrice. I miss you.”
Makonga later said he and Nbombashi had been friends since Nbombashi arrived in South Africa four years ago.
A collection was taken for Nbombashi’s family. His three-year-old son Christian lives in the DRC.
Speaking after the funeral, Yenga said his nephew had moved to Cape Town to escape the political unrest in the DRC, and make a better life for himself.
“This has been a big shock for the family. Fabrice is a young man, with so much to do.”
He described his nephew as someone who “loved to joke” and who “respected everyone”