Gran, you were a legend 

So around 01:00 AM this morning, gran decided that her tired body could no longer. God came to fetch one of his earthly Angels. 

Hendrina Magdelene Dorithia Van Wyk (I hope I spelt that correctly), born 5th December 1926, who  had decided to marry  a Thomas Robert Smith. And yes her names needed to be pronounced with a very English accent, according to her. They were the original Mr & Mrs Smith. 

Our 88, almost 89 year old facebooking, love everyone, caring mom, gran and great gran left this earth to be with her maker.

What will I remember … 

106 Key West … You have lived there since before I was born. It’s the only place I know. It has so many amazing memories and times when we went to visit you. The two block walk from your flat to the beach, and returning back to see you on ‘your chair’ was always the best. 106 Key West will not be the same again!

Caretaker … From when I could remember you were the caretaker of   Key West block of flats. All 108. You ‘rules’ with an iron fist, but you cared about and for everyone. You were 80 and you still wanted to be the caretaker. And you still reminded us till recently how things had changed and the building was no longer being in the ‘right’ way.

Heart patient … For the last 25 + you have battled with your heart. Your heart muscle had thickened, your angina had limited your ability to walk flights of stairs, along the beach front. Your quality of life had changed. 

Your love for Tom … You loved your husband, you loved our grand father. It was a special love. The way you referred to him, to the letters he wrote to you during World War II. But your love was demonstrated to me and others in how you looked after him through his 18 month fight with cancer. I was in primary school then, but I remember it like yesterday. You’re words will always stick with me … ‘He will not be taken up in a care home. He will be looked after by me in his own room.’ And you did, with a weak heart, you looked after him and cared for him, moved him, carried him, loved him and showed us how to love!

Widow … 24 years ago you became a widow, when Tom left us. You often said, you can’t wait to see him again. Today, the day came. 

Aunty baby … Everyone knew and loved aunty Baby. As the oldest of 5 daughters, you were the one called Baby! You were always being visited. All the kids in the block of flat would come and greet and say hello to Aunty Baby. All races, all religions, they loved you. And your loved them. And you were not scared to reprimand them if you thought it was needed. 

The work visits … I have been blessed that over the years that I have been working, my work has taken me to Durban on numerous occasions. I would often instead of staying in a hotel, ‘save’ some money, but actually it was a way to visit you after and during events. 

Social media “Gran Babe Smith” … The one and only original, almost 90 social media granny. You would like, comment and like some more. You would proudly say “I am a proud Tuks gran”. Your Facebook account Gran-Babe Smith, your Twitter account iBaby Smith @granbabesmith will be empty from all it positive message, posts, pictures and quotes.

Your love for children … Any bodies children but especially yours. All 3 children, 7 grand children and 5 great grandchildren. Your son and daughter in laws! Your care, sometimes along with it’s banter and demands, was alwayss with love! 

Your relationship with mom … She was and you too were best friends! What a special relationship for a mother and daughter to have. You could share everything, push the right buttons on each other, but again, All I saw was a deep care and love for one another. 

 Your relationship with dad … You loved your son-in-law. Your loved my dad! You knew he loves mom and you knew he would do anything for you and everyone. You appreciated him so much. 

Granny Gran … The nickname you very quickly got from Robyn when we started dating. You loved it. How you accepted Robyn instantly and very quickly she became Bambi. Thank you for loving her and us! 

Your legacy … Your great grandchildren. All of them, you loved more an your children and grandchildren, which I never thought could be possible. Your children are your legacy. I was so glad you were able to meet Madison. I was so glad you go to play with her 3 weeks ago. To realize that Madison is the derivative of Magdeleen, your second name … Your legacy lives on. 


You were tough … We were close and spoke openly to one another. I will forever cherish that and hope that one day I too can have the relationship you had with your children and grand children. You have looked forward to this day. You have fought an amazing fight. You were such a tough lady. You wanted to go, but you fought on for us all. You now no longer need to be tough Ma! 

“Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory. Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” ‭‭Psalm‬ ‭73:23-26‬ ‭NIV‬‬


Ma, I will miss you! We will miss you. Many will miss you. Be happy in the arms of the Lord. Be healed and be new! 

 Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.” John6:35 (NIV)


Love your Grandson, always! 


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