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Fire murder-suicide: Grandfather's sudden change shocks community

The elderly man & his grandson, who were killed when he set his car alight, will be laid to rest today.

Suspected kidnapping in Azaadville where a grandfather allegedly kidnapped his grandson and set the car alight on 8 April 2015. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - An elderly man and his four-year-old grandson, who burnt to death in an apparent murder-suicide in Azaadville, west of Johannesburg, will be laid to rest today.

It's understood the child was kidnapped by the 65-year-old on Wednesday while in the care of a domestic worker. Police say the man called the boy's parents, informing them of his intentions shortly before the incident.

They say community members spotted a vehicle on fire about a kilometre away from the man's house but efforts to extinguish the blaze failed as the two had already burnt to death.

The police's Solomon Sibiya says, "We're still investigating. We've opened an inquest docket to investigate further what actually caused the [incident]."

Residents of Azaadville say the elderly man was kind and very fond of the child.

They've described their shock and disbelief.

One resident says the 65-year-old was a wonderful person.

"He always used to pass here and greet, asking how we were and this, that and the other. I don't know. Something must have snapped somewhere along the line."

Another woman who lives in the area says she's still trying to make sense of what happened.

"This is very shocking. We can't overcome this; to think that a tragedy like this could happen."

WATCH: Azaadville community reeling after 'murder-suicide'

It's still unclear what may have led the man to set his car alight, killing himself and his grandson.

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