Today, 20 March, we salute and honour the following men & woman who sacrificed their lives whilst standing in the defence of what they held dear at the time and against evil and tyranny.


20 Mar 1977: 96704887PR Sapper Justin Trevor Watkins from the 4 Survey and Mapping Regiment, South African Engineer Corps was found dead on the Heidelberg Shooting Range with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head using his R4 rifle. He was 19.

20 Mar 1981: 78245727BG Seaman Marine Derek Jerome Meyer from the 1st Marine Brigade, South African Marine Corps, was accidentally killed after being struck by a bullet in cross-fire during a first light “L” ambush training exercise using live ammunition at the Piet Plessis training area near Mosita. He was 19.

20 Mar 1982: Rifleman Dumba Katibelo from 201 Battalion SWATF was Killed in Action near the Cut-Line during a contact with SWAPO/PLAN Insurgents. He was 23.

20 Mar 1983: Special Sergeant Atytale Amalua from the South West Africa Police Counter-Insurgency Wing: Ops-K Division (Koevoet) was Killed in Action during a contact with SWAPO/PLAN Insurgents in Northern Owamboland. He was 32.

20 Mar 1984: 80325558BG Gunner Joachim Jacobus Badenhorst from 61 Mechanised Battalion Group was killed when his Buffel Troop Carrier overturned on a wet road at Tsumeb, crushing him under the vehicle. He was 19.

20 Mar 1985: 80272078BG Rifleman Jan Andries Coetzee from 7 SAI was killed in a Military Vehicle Accident on the Witbank Highway. He was 20.

20 Mar 1988: 83207522BT Corporal Gregory MacKenzie Steward from the 44 Parachute Brigade Pathfinder Company was called up for a three-month camp in March 1988. He was Reported Missing while participating in a Sunday night practice parachute jump at Murray Hill just north of Pretoria. An intensive search was launched and his body was located an hour later and recovered. The Board of Enquiry determined that while lowering his backpack to his feet, he apparently did an accidental cut away and was unable to get his reserve chute open in time before he hit the ground. He was 20.

20 Mar 1989: 80635980BW Lance Corporal Phillip Swartz from 52 Battalion was killed in a motor cycle accident at Oshakati. He was 28.


    1973 – Pte George, 1st Bn, RAR, was killed by an accidental gunshot, Sipolilo, Op Hurricane, aged 19 years old.

    1977 – Rfn Jeffrey BARNARD, Depot RR, died in a vehicle accident.

    1977 – DSA Alec CHIMUPHOSE, Kp Prtn, Intaf, was killed in a landmine explosion near Pachanza, Mt Darwin.

    1977 – Christoffel Bernardus NEL, B Coy, Depot RR, died in a vehicle accident, Op Tangent.

    1978 – Spr Gavin Warwick ASHBY, RhE, died in a minefield accident on the eastern border. 

    † Their names and sacrifices have not been forgotten †

    • March 20, 2019
    • Piet Fourie
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