The family of slain Stellenbosch University student, Hannah Cornelius, is raising funds to purchase a hearing aid for her friend, Cheslin Marsh.
Marsh and Cornelius were hijacked and attacked in the early hours of 27 May 2017 while sitting in Cornelius’s VW Citi Golf in Stellenbosch. The assailants threatened Cornelius with a screwdriver while coercing Marsh to climb into the back of the vehicle.
Cornelius was brutally assaulted, raped and murdered. Her body was later discovered at the edge of a vineyard where it had been unceremoniously dumped.
Marsh, who was beaten and left for dead in the nearby town of Kraaifontein, was left with impaired hearing following the horrific incident.
The attackers smashed half-bricks around Marsh’s head after he gave them the wrong ATM pins for the bank cards they had forcefully taken from him.
Making use of the charity crowdfunding system BackaBuddy, Cornelius’ family has banded together to set up a fund that will help Marsh purchase a hearing aid.
“Through the Hannah Cornelius Foundation‚ we are raising money to assist Cheslin Marsh of Wellington in the Western Cape to buy a hearing aid‚” Cornelius’ cousin, Lali van Zuydam, wrote.
Van Zuydam set a target of R15 000 on the page and by Wednesday morning the campaign had raised nearly R20 000.
“Cheslin was left deaf in one ear following the brutal kidnapping and assault. Hannah did not survive the attack,” she continued.
Marsh appeared in the Western Cape High Court on Tuesday, where the scars left on his head from the attack are still visible.
“Hannah always saw the good in everyone,” Marsh said. “She probably believed them when they said they were going to let us go and give back the car.”
The four accused include Vernon Witbooi (33), Geraldo Parsons (27), Eben van Niekerk (28), and Nashville Julius (29) of the attack, and all will appear in court on Wednesday.