Belfast Telegraph

Ex-Ulster star Pienaar grieves for sister killed in South African crash

Ruan Pienaar with his wife Monique (third from right) and sister Rene O’Ehley (second from left)
Ruan Pienaar with his wife Monique (third from right) and sister Rene O’Ehley (second from left)
Tragic loss: Rene's rugby star brother Ruan Pienaar
Rene O'Ehley

By Adrian Rutherford

Former Ulster Rugby star Ruan Pienaar is mourning the death of his sister in a horror car crash in South Africa.

Rene O'Ehley was killed in a four-vehicle accident on Friday.

The 38-year-old mother-of-two was the daughter of ex-Springbok full back Gysie Pienaar.

Her brother Ruan played for Ulster between 2010 and 2017.

Former Ulster Rugby star Neil Best posted on Twitter: "The thoughts of Ulster Rugby fans everywhere will no doubt be with Ruan Pienaar and his family #OnceAnUlsterman."

Fans also took to social media to send their condolences to the one-time Ravenhill favourite.

One wrote: "Such sad, sad news. Our thoughts and prayers are with Ruan and his family at this time."

Another said: "God's comfort to Ruan and his family. No one knows the pain such a loss can cause."

The accident happened on the N2 between Botrivier and Caledon on South Africa's Western Cape.

Traffic chief Kenny Africa confirmed that a woman driving a VW Polo died in the crash, which involved three other vehicles - two Mercedes trucks and a Hilux bakkie.

Mrs O'Ehley lived with her financial adviser husband Edmund (41) in Vredenburg.

She had an eight-year-old son and 12-year-old daughter, and was a teacher at Bredasdorp Primary.

Mr O'Ehley said he and his children spent Saturday at De Doorns, where his son is playing cricket.

"I think it takes a bit of the hurt away and occupies the thoughts on something else.

"We are all very sad," he told South African media.

Theuns Stoffberg, a former Springbok team-mate of Gysie Pienaar, said: "We heard about Rene's death from a group of former players who connect on WhatsApp, but don't know what happened.

"We sympathise with Gysie during these difficult times."

Belfast Telegraph

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