VOL. 11             NO. 15             APRIL 10, 2006

Blessing the children

Her dedication to her calling led to Mandeni caregiver Clare Kalkwarf arriving home late and walking into an armed robbery


Tanya Waterworth

THE callous killing of Mandeni resident, Clare Kalkwarf (56) has sent shock waves through the community.

Described as a dedicated worker at the Blessed Gerard's Care Centre for HIV/AIDS sufferers, Clare was gunned down in her home on Thursday night.

Kalkwarf's husband Geoff had returned home around 7.30pm and was entering the house when four men held him up at his front door.

He was dragged inside where he was tied up and a sheet was thrown over him for the next four hors, as the armed men ransacked the house.

After raiding the liquor cabinet and littering the house with cigarette butts, the assailants apparently sat down and watched television.

Clare arrived around 11pm and saw one of the armed men in her kitchen.

She shouted at him and ran outside in an attempt to escape.

But the assailant caught her and stabbed her in the back and arm, before dragging her back into the house where one of the men shot her in the chest.

'Mrs Kalkwarf died at the scene.

'The suspects then left with electronic and household goods and the victim's vehicle, a white VW Golf (NZ 9620),' said SAPS spokesperson, Supt Jay Naiker.

Stunned community members soon learned of the shocking murder.

'She had stayed for a meeting at the centre, which finished about 10.30pm.1

'Instead of going directly home, she called in to see every patient before leaving.2

'That is the kind of person she was and why she was greatly loved and respected,' said a local resident.

Head of the Blessed Gérard's Care Centre, Father Gérard said that Clare had worked at the hospice for 13 years3 and had been at the forefront of rolling out antiretroviral treatment in the area, working as a project co-ordinator.4

'She was an angel to the poor and the afflicted in our area.

'She dedicated her entire life to caring for the poor, the sick and children.

'She was shot for a car and a television,' he said.

1 Clare Kalkwarf left about 10:50pm.

2 This is a nice legend, but not true. In fact Clare Kalkwarf left her office about 10:50pm and went straight to her car. Outside the garage of Blessed Gérard's Care Centre she met Deacon Müller and his wife Angelika and had a nice and short chat with them about the children of Blessed Gérard's Children's Home, who had been at an outing to the beach earlier that day with Deacon Müller. She said, she looked forward to see his pictures the next day and left about 10:55pm. She obviously went straight home from there, as the official time of death was at 11:02pm.

3 It was 13 years ago that Clare Kalkwarf co-founded the Brotherhood of Blessed Gérard, which built and opened Blessed Gérard's Hospice 10 years ago, on 3 September 1996.

4 Clare Kalkwarf was the project manager of Blessed Gérard's Hospice HAART Programme.

This page was created on 26 April 2006 and last updatet on Tuesday, 23 August 2011 00:38:05

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