In the early morning of January 11th, 2023, at the age of 53, Liezl Schutte returned to her heavenly home after a valiant 5-year fight with cancer. Her devotion to her family and firm belief in Christ supported her in this battle and ultimately gave her peace. Though her fleshly body faded her faith in the goodness of God remained steadfast. She will be remembered as a mother who loved fiercely, as a wife who undeniably supported and cared for her husband, as a daughter who consistently believed in the importance of upholding family, and as a friend who made your burdens her own. Without fail she was always there to lend a hand to anyone and everyone even if it was to her own detriment. She delighted in the service of others.
Liezl is survived by her loving husband, Andre Schutte, two sons, Mikail and Luka Schutte, and daughter in-law Moriah (wife of Mikail). Liezl is the beloved daughter of Gysie and Captain Matt Heyns, and sister to Leon, Kallie, Thys, and Ilze. Because of her mother’s devout faith, Liezl grew up regularly hearing the Word of God. Because of her example, she learned to be a woman after God’s own heart. Due to her father’s rank in the Navy, Liezl grew up in various seaport towns in South Africa. The Heyns family ultimately ended up in Fish Hoek, Cape Town where her father served the remainder of his Naval career. At the age of 19, Andre and Liezl’s love story began. At that time, Andre was a naval seaman serving alongside Thys Heyns. Andre and Thys became quick friends through basic training. Their friendship was bonded over their similar hobbies, especially surfing. Little did Thys know that his best friend would fall fast and hard for his baby sister. Andre and Liezl met the spring of 1988 in Noordhoek, Cape Town. Liezl was captivated by Andre’s fun-loving personality, and of course, devilishly handsome good looks. Andre, however, was focused on his budding career and his love for catching waves. Though Andre was distracted, Liezl knew that she found her husband. Three months after meeting when Andre was stationed in Alexander Bay, South Africa,Liezl, her sister Ilze and father, came to visit Thys. Over those next few weeks, Andre began to see what Liezl knew all along… they were destined for each other. A year and a half later, they wed on April 14th, 1990. They welcomed their first-born son, Mikail Daniel Schutte, August 27th, 1991. The budding family resided in Naval housing in Da Gama Park, Cape Town and two years later their family grew once more as their second son, Ivan Lucian Schutte, was born October 13th, 1993. The family of four remained in South Africa for 11 more years until they packed up and moved their life to England, UK in search for new opportunities. While in England, Liezl’s wish to be blessed with another child was granted and Luka Arin Schutte was born, August 25th, 2006. A year later, the now family of five, moved back to Cape Town. Four years later, the Schutte family was struck with tragedy as their beloved son, Ivan (18 years of age), was killed in a car accident. As the family mourned the loss of their precious boy, they were comforted by the immediate support of family and the church body of Calvary Chapel, Kommetjie. Even in the face of the unimaginable, Andre and Liezl continued to trust in the faithfulness of God and boldly implored their two boys Mikail and Luka to do the same. By their example their sons grew closer in relationship to Christ. Even as she grieved the loss of her second born, she understood more clearly the sacrificial love of God and how she related on an emotional level to the Creator of the universe. Though her heart longed for her heaven-bound son, she persevered for better days to come. Years later, their family took an impromptu trip to Jefferys Bay, South Africa to attend a surf competition and visit old friends. During that trip Liezl conversed with a young missionary girl from the U.S. with whom she took a fast liking to. Liezl then casually uttered five words that changed that girl’s life forever…”You should meet my son!” Similar to Liezl and Andre’s love story, it was a match made in heaven. Mikail and Moriah wed December 27th, 2020, during a short period of grace-filled time in which Liezl was in remission during that five year fight with cancer. By a divine miracle, God orchestrated the family to be in attendance as their family of four grew to five again. She finally had a daughter after 31 years of being the only woman represented in their home. The two of them became fast friends and delighted in one another’s company. Liezl took pride in her family and them in her.
It is undeniable that Liezl was a hard worker and incredibly intelligent. She spoke her native tongue Afrikaans and learned English as her second language. While being a full-time mother of two, Liezl achieved a diploma in childcare. Because of her incredible organizational skills, she was then chosen to be an administrative assistant for the Navy. After many years of service to the community in different roles and numerous career opportunities, she decided to open up her own cleaning business.. Perseverance was her nature, even when she was diagnosed with cancer, enduring multiple operations, and chemotherapy. She continued working until her body simply could not anymore.
Liezl was a fighter and overcomer of many trials and an encourager to the broken-hearted, even when she too was broken. She lived her life as a walking testimony of faith despite suffering. Her passion for Christ was undeniable and most of all, noticeable. Every single day she would encourage those around her to have faith, whether that was in a face-to-face conversation, a phone call, a social media post, or a text message. The verse she often chose to encourage others with, as well as herself, is Psalm 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God.” Though she would describe her life to be full and busy, how precious it is to know she is now peacefully still in the presence of God alongside her dear boy whom she so desperately longed for.
She blessed all those who were fortunate enough to grace her presence and will be missed as the ones left behind try their best to honor her beautiful legacy.