Barry, the 80-year-old father of the late model Reeva Steenkamp, has tragically passed away. It is a loss deeply felt by many South Africans, who believe that his death may have been due to a broken heart, stemming from the tragic murder of his daughter a decade ago by Oscar Pistorius. Barry’s death occurred in his sleep on the evening of Thursday, September 14, as reported by a foundation.
Just a month prior to Barry’s passing, both he and his wife, June, celebrated what would have been Reeva’s 40th birthday. The Reeva Rebecca Steenkamp Foundation released a statement, expressing their sorrow: “It is with heavy hearts that we announce the sudden and peaceful passing of Barry Steenkamp in his sleep on the early evening of September 14, 2023. Barry was a blessing to many, and he will be remembered with love and great fondness. We find solace in the knowledge that he is now with his beloved Reeva.”
In May, Barry celebrated his milestone 80th birthday. Only three months later, he and June commemorated Reeva’s 40th birthday, but the image of the elderly couple during these moments was far from celebratory. Comments on social media reflected the collective sadness, with many expressing sentiments like, “This has to be one of the saddest photos ever. She should be sitting next to them” and “Very sad indeed.”
Reports indicate that Barry Steenkamp had experienced deteriorating health. Particularly following Reeva’s tragic death at the hands of Oscar Pistorius on Valentine’s Day in 2013. During Pistorius’s murder trial, in which he faced charges of culpable homicide, Barry suffered two strokes, as reported by TimesLive. In the M-Net documentary, “My Name Is Reeva,” June Steenkamp revealed that Barry had never been the same since their daughter’s passing and that their marriage had faced considerable strain.
In the wake of Barry’s passing, many South Africans believe that he may have succumbed to a broken heart. Social media comments reflect this sentiment, with individuals expressing their empathy for Barry’s immense suffering and relentless search for closure.
In the documentary “My Name Is Reeva,” Barry Steenkamp discussed his face-to-face meeting with Oscar Pistorius during the Department of Correctional Service’s Victim Offender Dialogue program. However, the encounter at the Qheberha correctional facility did not yield the closure that Reeva’s grieving father had anticipated.
Barry shared, “You arrive there thinking you’re going to say this and that, but it doesn’t work out that way. It’s just a sad, sad thing. I asked him certain questions… and I expected different answers. He gave me his truth, but I didn’t get my truth.”
Accompanying Barry during the meeting was the Steenkamp family attorney, Tania Koen. She described the atmosphere as one filled with overwhelming grief and sadness. It was a moment where a father had to confront his daughter’s killer. Pistorius himself displayed signs of remorse and regret. However, Koen remained skeptical, stating, “I don’t believe Oscar’s version, and I don’t believe he told Barry the truth.”
Barry Steenkamp’s passing marks the end of a chapter filled with pain, loss, and relentless pursuit of the truth. It underscores the enduring impact of Reeva’s tragic death on her family. Serves as a reminder of the complexities of forgiveness and closure in the face of such profound tragedy.