Community mourns ‘Ta Bakkies’

Desmore Marks, 53, a Durbanville vendor who passed away recently.

The Durbanville community is mourning the death of newspaper vendor, Desmore Marks, who passed away on Thursday July 19 of a heart attack.

Mr Marks, 53, from Elsies River, had been selling and delivering the Rapport newspaper in the area for the past 21 years and was known as “Ta Bakkies”.

According to residents, Mr Marks was a man with few words but loved his job.

Residents said he was so dedicated to his work that sometimes he would walk all the way from Elsies River to Durbanville on days he didn’t have taxi fare.

Wendy Brymer is a blind Durbanville resident whom Mr Marks would help cross the road daily on Hoof and Queen streets and she had nothing but admiration for him. “Desmore was a unique person who was always there to help. I would already know it was him because I knew him by his footsteps. He would take my arm and not say a word; even my guide dog Lucy was fond of him,” said Ms Brymer.

Mandy de Koker, from Oom Theo se Winkel, said: “We are saddened to hear the news of his sudden passing, his loyal delivery of newspapers to our business and his warm smile will sadly be missed.”

His contractor, Keith Fraser, said Desmore was one of his best employees.

“He got to work on time, he would already be there by 7am. I don’t remember Desmore being late one day in his 31 years as a newspaper vendor, it’s a terrible loss,” said Mr Fraser.

His family is still coming to grips with Mr Marks’ passing.

“What his colleagues didn’t know is that he was a matriculant, he was a humble, hard-working man, lived a simple life but like all of us he had his faults, but not once did he disrespect his family,” said his brother-in-law, Fisal Abrahams.

Mr Marks was buried on Tuesday July 31.