'She was ill for so long but was a fighter'- Ma Lillian Dube & Mfundi Vundla remember Mary Twala
Lillian Dube has honoured Mary Twala, after the veteran actress' death on Saturday, saying her close friend had fought a good fight and is finally at peace.
Mary died on Saturday morning at Netcare Park Lane Hospital in Johannesburg. She was 80 years old.
The star had struggled with her health for several months and speaking to TshisaLIVE, Ma Lillian said she was relieved that her friend was no longer in pain.
“She had finished her race, she was tired now. I am glad she has now found relief.
“Her passing was not a shock to me, she had been sick for a very long time but was a fighter. She was filled with positivity, even though she was in pain, she wouldn't let it get to her. When Somizi threw her 79th birthday at Maslow, already she was really sick. She wouldn't give in though, she was very strong.”
Ma Lillian remembered the last time she saw Mary, in hospital several months ago.
“It was January and we laughed and talked and cried. Even though she was in hospital, she was joking. I called her again during lockdown and she told me she was well but missing Somizi.”
Lillian praised her friend's professionalism, saying she loved her craft with all her heart. Away from the screens, she would miss her compassion and kindness.
“She was so humble and loving. The thing that really impressed me was that she stood by Somizi, even when people were mocking him and talking about his sexuality. Some people would hide behind their religion but she stood by him. She loved her son, she loved all her children, and was so proud of all of them. She would defend them with everything she had.
“I will miss her friendship. I am so lucky to have had a friend where we didn't compete or compare. It was all about love and respect. She was so loving.”
She joked that if she had one last moment with Ma Mary, she would tell her that she would miss her but not to come “fetch” her.
“I would tell her to rest in peace but don't call me. Don't come fetch me, I also want to live to 80 years old.”
Mfundi Vundla also paid tribute to Mary, telling TshisaLIVE that she was a trailblazer who would always be remembered.
“Mary was a great pioneer of the industry and I had a lot of respect for her. She believed in the culture and acted on it, with little support from government and anyone else. She had sheer grit and made a success of her dreams. She helped make this industry what it is today and she has to be respected for that.”