Prizewinning veteran cartoonist Weyni Deysel committed suicide on Saturday evening  according to an SABC news report on Sunday. It was the day after his 59th birthday. Early reports say Deysel shot himself at his home in Alberton and died later in hospital. He left no note.

Deysel (pictured below) started out as a cartoonist for Perskor and The Citizen. He left to work for Rapport, Vaderland and Sunday Times, amongst other publications, and also did a bout as marketing manager for a banking group, before rejoining The Citizen in 2007 where he had worked fulltime ever since.

In a career spanning some 30 years, Deysel's talent was recognised by a number of awards including: Standard Bank's Cartoonist of the Year (1983, '84, '85), FAK Prize (1989), ABSA Dolphin Prize (2001) and the Gauteng region of the Vodacom Journalist of the Year award (Cartoonists) in 2009.

SAPA reports that Martin Williams, editor of The Citizen, has said that Deysel's death is a sad loss for the newspaper which in a story published in 2009 said of the cartoonist: "He sets a pace that many aspiring and practicing journalists could learn from. Weyni rises early to read the newspapers. He keeps up to date during the day. As a result of this diligence, when it comes to editorial conferences he is informed, on top of his game, and always offers interesting suggestions".

Comedian and longtime friend Leon Schuster, whose CD and DVD covers were illustrated by Deysel said, “The country has lost a pillar of humour and a great man.”

Weyni Deysel, Cartoonist.

WEYNI DEYSEL at work with brush and pen and doing what he loved best: "making people smile". A short biography and portfolio of his work can be viewed here.

Details of the funeral arrangements will be announced on this site and a tribute page will be put up on the site shortly to provide for tributes and commiserations. Meanwhile, readers may leave their comments beneath this report, and they will be moved to the tribute page once it is up.

Posted on May 16, 2010 by Africartoons Bookmark and Share