Miguel Louw’s parents, Raylene and Kirk, stare at his coffin during a church service in Sydenham. Picture: Karinda Jagmohan

DURBAN – The Sydenham schoolboy who went missing in July was laid to rest on Saturday. The 9-year-old Miguel Louw’s body lay in a closed white and gold coffin as hundreds of mourners gathered at the St Anne’s Church in Sydenham to bid farewell to the child.

Louw, who went missing on July 18, was found buried in a shallow grave in Phoenix two weeks ago. His body was in the late stage of decomposition. A frame sat atop his coffin with a picture of the little boy.

Police confirmed DNA results were positive earlier this week. A white balloon with the words ‘Miguel Louw’, was placed at the head of the coffin.

Louw’s death has brought families and communities together, and perhaps Louw has served a greater purpose, said Reverend Father Ndodana Tshuma.

Miguel Louw funeral programme. Picture: Karinda Jagmohan

But he urged parents to take a stand to protect children.

“Miguel, lying here in this state is proof that we live in a sick society,” he said.

Watch: We live in a sick society – Reverend

Reverend Father Ndodana Tshuma said Miguel Louw’s death was proof that society was sick. Video: Karinda Jagmohan

Miguel’s mum, Raylene, buried her face in her hands, sobbing as her son’s body was prayed over.

Her words to her son on a leaflet in the funeral programme.

“Mummy loves you so much, and I miss you dearly. I have no words to describe the pain I feel my son. You are a hero, a warrior,” she wrote.

Miguel’s father, Kirk Louw, wrote: “Daddy will always have you in his heart. Although I cannot see you, I feel you with me, even though you’re gone too soon.”

Big sister, Mikayla, after comforting her mother, read a poem.

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Miguel’s body will be cremated, the family announced as they left the church, with blue and white balloons, and doves flying behind them – a celebration of the child’s life.

Miguel Louw's coffin. Picture: Karinda Jagmohan
Miguel Louw’s coffin. Picture: Karinda Jagmohan

SUNDAY TRIBUNE