Police probe death of Rondebosch woman, 75

Rondebosch police say the investigation into the death of a 75-year-old woman in her home in Station Road and the burglary of her home is ongoing.

Rondebosch police spokesman Warrant Officer Lyndon Sisam said a private security company had responded to an alarm that had been triggered at Patricia (Pat) Ellis’ home on Thursday December 5 at 3.32am but could not access the property due to its high gates.

They located someone in the complex who had spare keys and on entering the home, they found Ms Ellis on her bed.

“There was no blunt force trauma but we are waiting on the results of the autopsy,” Warrant Officer Sisam said.

The police confirmed that Ms Ellis’ Volvo was later recovered in Hout Bay but says it is not clear yet what had been stolen from her home.

Warrant Officer Sisam said entry had been gained through a window.

Ms Ellis was a long-standing member of the St George’s Cathedral and established and managed the church’s charity bookshop for years before it closed.

On its Facebook page, the Diocesan Standing Committee of the Anglican Diocese of Cape Town wrote: “ As much as we recognise the tragic and awful nature of her passing we wish to affirm and celebrate Pat’s life as that of one that was intentional and well-lived always to the honour and glory of God. Our hearts go out to the family of Pat offering them the assurance of our love and prayers and the hope that they will know the comforting presence of the Holy Spirit in the days to come.

“In a similar fashion, we embrace our cathedral community, of which Pat has been a long-time and actively involved member, as they struggle with the knowledge of her death.

“Her presence in the life of the cathedral is measured by the weight of her care for all who were absent from the table of equity and abundance of our society and her quiet manner of including those found on the periphery of church life,” the message read.

The Very Reverent Michael Weeder, the Dean of St George’s Cathedral wrote in a tribute to Ms Ellis on his personal Facebook page: “… Because of the essential goodness of your ways, the questions about the absence of God flurry forth from hearts seeking meaning where none can be found.

“Meaning that was there in the silence as when Mary stood ’neath the darkening sky near the cross of her son…

“As you did when chaperoning the curious and the faithful devotees into the Cathedral Cloister along the labyrinth after the Holy Week Taize service; the lighting of the candles for the first walk in the deep dark of the winter solstice or, alone, but for the company of the albino squirrel in the cooling hush of a summer evening.

“Preparedness as in attending the solemnities of each high feast and holy day – embodied in the varied pain-filled stigmata of your life – ensured that you were not unprepared when death stole into your life in the drowsy dark of the birthing day. You were not alone in the moment of wanton terror when the thieves of life claimed yours without care for the goodness of your ways.

“Your cry heard within the cradling sigh of Jesus, the alpha in your omega, who loved you home at that moment of your least expectedness. Be at in peace, servant of the Most High.”

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