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Motorcyclist dies in Main Road

One tragedy apparently lead to another when a motorcyclist, believed to have been en route to pay respects to a friend, died in an accident mere metres from where a memorial to the friend was due to take place.

The tragedy occurred on Thursday 29 October and claimed the life of 33-year-old Somerset West local Victor Hawton. The victim was apparently on his way to pay tribute to the late Ernand van Driel (20), who died in a collision, also in Main Road, in the early hours of Sunday 25 October (“Een van ses broers sterf in botsing”, DistriksPos, 29 Oktober).

Van Driel had lost control of his black Citi Golf, due possibly to a mechanical fault, and crashed into a tree outside Westridge. He was the only occupant of the vehicle and succumbed to his injuries on the scene.

Family and friends of the young man, who was passionate about motorcycles, had a special gathering at the accident scene on that fateful Thursday.

According to Van Driel’s mother, Hawton was a friend of her second eldest son and apparently on his way to attend the memorial of her late son when the accident occurred less than a kilometre away from the gathering.

Sergeant Suzan Jantjies, spokesperson for Somerset West police, could not confirm this, but did confirm the fatal motorcycle accident. She said it occurred in Main Road at 18:30.

“It is believed that the 33-year-old Victor Hawton was riding his blue motorcycle when he lost control and landed in the opposite lane, in the path of an oncoming silver Toyota Quantum travelling towards Somerset West,” she said. “Hawton had been travelling in the direction of the R44. He died on the scene.”

Police are investigating a case of culpable homicide.

Many friends and acquaintances took to Facebook to pay tribute to Hawton, who apparently was a self-employed farrier. One of them, Sue van der Linde of the Iris House Children’s Hospice in Bellville, where he had served as beloved farrier for four years, described Hawton as a giant of a man with a heart of gold.

“[H]is kindness and love for horses and animals, his great sense of humour and his never-give-up attitude were just some of the amazing traits of this wonderful man,” her post read. “As we all know, a horse is only as good as its hooves, and Victor made sure our therapy horses were perfect. The world is a little less bright today without him.”

Van der Linde, in a telephonic interview, said the hospice had lost “an amazing farrier”, but more a wonderful, kind man, who stood out. “He was always happy, positive and fabulously compassionate and hard-working,” she said.

Despite several attempts, DistrictMail could not reach Hawton’s family for comment on their tragic loss.

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