Saturday, November 5, 2011

George McKenzie Campbell

Pretoria - "I heard his cheeks were tear-streaked and that his mouth was open as if he had wanted to say something before they shot him in the head," said heart-broken blind father Deon Campbell.

The Elardus Park father was talking in Pretoria on Sunday.

The bodies of his son, George McKenzie Campbell, 18, and Ben van der Berg, his employer of a month, were found next to the N14 highway in Tarlton near Krugersdorp on Friday.

The men apparently had been forced on to their knees before they were killed by a single bullet to the head.

Campbell said: "Police said their hands were tied to their ankles behind their backs. They fell forward after being shot. It was an execution, but they shot the wrong people."

The bodies were found about 11km apart. Campbell said police suspected his son was shot about three hours after Van der Berg had been killed.

"I wonder what was going through his head, and if he had begged them not to shoot him."

The post-mortems would be done on Monday, said Campbell.
'I would have heard it in his voice'

Because Campbell is blind, his wife and a family member, Johan Booyse, had to identify his son's body.

Campbell said: "My son was very careful, and he would never have become mixed up with anything untoward.

"I would have heard it in his voice if he had been in trouble, because, as a result of my blindness, I'm very tuned in to sounds.

"The only comfort I have is that he was religious and that he read his Bible every night.

Van der Berg farmed sheep and ran a nursery at Tarlton. Martie Nel, who lived with him on the farm, was still shocked on Sunday about his death.

"This is terrible. I keep wondering why they were going out that time of night. They were barefoot.

'Doesn't seem like a hijacking'
"Were they on their way to buy cool drinks? Was it a hijacking that had gone wrong?"

Paula Nothnagel said on Sunday police were following up all possible leads.
"The motive for the murder is still unknown, but it doesn't seem like a hijacking - it was murder."

Van der Berg's parents didn't want to comment.

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