Martin van Breda, 54, with wife Teresa, 55, at the opening of the Engel & Völkers in Mooloolaba
Martin van Breda, 54, with wife Teresa, 55, at the opening of the Engel & Völkers in Mooloolaba

Coast mourns family killed in South African axe attack

THE Sunshine Coast real estate industry is mourning the shock death of former Buderim businessman Martin van Breda in an apparent axe attack.

Martin, 54, his wife Teresa, 55, and son Rudi, 22, were found dead at their luxury South African home on Wednesday at De Zalze Winelands Golf Estate, an exclusive golf resort in Stellenbosch, about 50 kilometres east of Cape Town.

Daughter Marli, 16, is in a critical condition, while another son, Henri, 20, was slightly injured.

South African media reports say the family was hacked with an axe.

Reports further state Henri is assisting police with their enquiries.

The family moved back to South Africa last year but their impact on the Coast is still felt today.

Karl Rademeyer with wife Lindi remember the van Breda family
Karl Rademeyer with wife Lindi remember the van Breda family Erle Levey

Martin's former colleague Karl Rademeyer described his friend as a loving father with a drive for business and a hard working attitude.

"He was very entrepreneurial, hardworking and extremely professional, but at the same time he was a really nice guy," Mr Rademeyer said.

"He absolutely loved his family and would talk about his kids all the time and boast about how well his sons were doing at uni with top marks.

"They were a loving family, I'd met them a few times and while they hadn't lived on the Coast for long, they had a touched so many people here and had a lot of friends in Buderim."
 

The van Breda family. Father Martin, wife Teresa and son Rudi have been killed in an apparent axe attack at their South African home. Daughter Marli is now in a critical condition.
The van Breda family. Father Martin, wife Teresa and son Rudi have been killed in an apparent axe attack at their South African home. Daughter Marli is now in a critical condition. Facebook

A South African native, Martin and Teresa moved to Australia to pursue a business venture in real estate in Perth.
Standing at the helm as Australian Master Franchisor, Martin opened the first Engel and Volkers Australia office in Mooloolaba in 2010.

Friends say the family moved back to South Africa to pursue a new venture in establishing private schools.
Marli, who formally attended Matthew Flinders Anglican College, was to graduate in South Africa before the family planned to eventually move back to Buderim.

Former Engel and Volkers colleague at Paul Freney said he was in shock over the tragic incident.
"I was gutted when I found out," Mr Freney said.

"We still kept in touch.

"He was a very smart businessman, but he was still a human sort of bloke.

"He loved rugby, we'd go and watch matches all the time.

"Everything was fine, he loved his family, we don't know what happened."

South African media have reported no arrests have been made over the triple deaths.
 

 

EARLIER: Coast link to family murdered in South African axe attack

A FORMER Sunshine Coast businessman, his wife and son have been killed in an apparent axe attack in South Africa.

Martin van Breda, 54, wife Teresa, 55 and son Rudi, 22, were all found dead at their luxurious estate near the city of Stellenbosch.

South African media is reporting Martin and Teresa's 16-year-old daughter has been taken to hospital in a critical condition.

Their 20-year-old son Henri was taken from the scene by police.

An emergency services spokesman confirmed to South African media that they were attacked with an axe.
"What I can say is they were not shot - the patients were axed," he said.

"The daughter was rushed to hospital with severe head trauma and a severed jugular."

"The other son had minor bruises on his arms. He was treated at the scene."

The son was described as being seriously injured and unable to walk, according to the chairman of the estate's homeowner's association.

In a statement he told other residents "there was no breach of our security on the estate and we believe it was an isolated incident, confined to the scene of the crime .

"As soon as more details become available, we shall release the same to residents."

The van Bredas became Australia's first franchisees for Engel & Völkers - an exclusive firm with 450 offices in 37 countries.

Mr van Breda was the managing director.

They opened a storefront for the company in Mooloolaba in September of 2010.

Member for Buderim Steve Dickson, along with a who's who of the Coast's property industry turned out for the opening.

On its website, the Engel & Völkers office is listed in Buderim.

Mr van Breda reportedly lived in Perth with his wife for six years before returning to South Africa in 2014.



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