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WATCH | Touching moments from Busisiwe Lurayi's memorial

“It’s difficult for me to mention her in the past, it’s way too early.”

Busisiwe "Busi" Lurayi's father said they were really hurting as a family
Busisiwe "Busi" Lurayi's father said they were really hurting as a family
Image: Twitter/ Netflix SA

Speakers at Busisiwe “Busi” Lurayi's memorial service had a difficult time referring to her in the past tense and some tried very hard to hold back tears as they bid the star farewell.

Her sudden death left her family, friends and colleagues with broken hearts and they are still trying to make sense of the loss.

The actress' aunt Sonti Lurayi was the first to speak after singer and songwriter Simphiwe Dana performed.

“We are all broken. We all share this day knowing that not only did we love Busi but she loved us back. She gave us her all in terms of love. I’m not sure who’s going to perform for us going forward. She was such a great performer. It’s difficult for me to mention her in the past, it’s way too early.

The 37-year old is survived by her daughter Ayana who she adored.

“Her biggest role was that of a mother. She mothered Ayana and, for me, it's rather, in fact I can’t talk about that right now, it’s rather difficult. I would rather talk about Busi being a child to us. We have lost a child. This feels like a movie that’s being fast forwarded. It’s as if we must say, stop, somewhere in the middle of the movie or rewind. It really feels like that,” said Sonti.

The star's cousin Faith said they were the best of friends who shared everything together.

“What I would mostly want to remember, even in her adulthood, is her being the light in my life, is for her being my baby sister, is for her being my first best friend and I just want to thank you, Busi, for your love for me. For your generosity and expressing it, I always knew that you loved me and I love you too. I want to thank you for Ayana and may your love and spirit continue to live through her. I still don’t believe you are gone and I will love you forever,” she said.

Busi's father Freddie Mokoena said they were really hurting as a family. He described his daughter as someone who stood up for her rights.

It's really hard, but we move on, we are not going to be scared, we’re in deep water right now. What I would like to leave you with is what you don’t know about Busi. You’ve seen her on set and on stage doing performances and you’ve been saying what a brave girl she was. Fearful, I must tell you that, but she had the courage. There was nothing impossible when she set her mind on something. Busisiwe was 'Busisiwe' because she was born on Sunday, it was for a purpose, because she blessed us as the Lurayis and the Mokoenas.”

Renowned thespian and artistic director James Ngcobo said Busi was like a sister to him who helped him grow as a director. 

The pair worked on several productions together and he said he would always marvel at Busi's artistic expression.

She was a lover of the black narrative universally and was an absolute gift who was able to immerse herself in her work. 

“Busi was one person who was always privy to my plans, even though she was not in the productions that was going to be staged, she and I, we could talk, we could really talk and we absolutely fell in love with each other.

“Busi had a thing where sometimes people misunderstood her and said she was a diva. She was never a diva. Busi wanted to know what you want her to do, she was an actor who worked with such detail. Without detail Busi would be on your neck like an albatross saying, 'what do I do?' In our industry that is quickly confused with being a diva, even when it’s not.”



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