Today, 21 April, 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.

SOUTH AFRICAN BORDER WAR

21 April 1966: Two members of 17 Squadron and three passengers were drowned when their Alouette III, Serial No. 65 suffered engine failure and crashed into the sea off Terrace Bay, South West Africa. They were:

  • 01505001R Lieutenant (Pilot) Tobias Johannes Winterbach. He was 22
  • 24031 Air Corporal (Flight Engineer) Henry George Morton. He was 21
  • 33107 Constable Dirk J.A. Brand of the South African Police (Passenger)
  • Mr P.J. Holmes (Passenger)
  • Mr D. Bernhardt (Passenger)21 April 1977: 73493439BC Corporal Heinrich Rudolph Bigalke from 3 SAI was killed when his military vehicle overturned 20km from Rundu. He was 19.

21 April 1978: 74496175BG Private Barry Craig Rieder from SWA SPES Unit SWATF was accidentally killed at Oshivello during a night practice ambush. It appears that he was shot during the period that the patrol were firing into the "killing zone” or “doodsakker" after the simulated ambush was “triggered”.. After about a minute of firing a soldier reported that Barry had been wounded and the exercise was stopped immediately. Barry was found with a severe head wound and after receiving emergency treatment, he was immediately evacuated but unfortunately succumbed to his wounds approximately an hour later. He was 20. His Grave headstone incorrectly indicates his date of death as 22 April 1978.21 April 1983: 80316250BG Glen Joseph Fleischer from 3 SAI was found dead at Potchefstroom with a gunshot wound to the head, apparently self-inflicted as no foul play was suspected. He was 18.21 April 1987: Two members of the SADF were killed when their military vehicle was involved in a head-on collision with a civilian vehicle at Rundu. The casualties were:

  • 81175259BG Lance Corporal Clifton David Kilroe from 8 SAI. He was 21.
  • 82070079BW Rifleman Hans Harold Scheepers from 55 Battalion. He was 25.
21 April 1992: Three members of the South African Medical Corps Training Centre were killed in a Military Vehicle Accident on the Potchefstroom to Westonaria Road. They were:
  • 89274815BG Lance Corporal Efstratios Kladis. He was 18.
  • 89227185BG Private Bradley John Gordon. He was 19.
  • 89559793BG Private Roelof Frederick Malan. He was 19.

RHODESIAN BUSH WAR

1976 – Corporal Ismael BENNETT, 4 Protection Company, Rhodesia Defence Regiment, killed on active service. Died in the Princess Margaret Hospital of an intracranial haemorrhage, as a result of an accident, at the age of 21. Buried in the Pioneer Cemetery, Salisbury.

1977 – Corporal John MERIKE, Sinoia Horse Troop, Intaf, murdered. Killed in the Sinoia district (Lomagundi), Op Hurricane. He was abducted by terrorists and then paraded around the Magondi TTL before being bayoneted to death.

1978 – Constable Prince MANYEKU, T Troop, Support Unit, BSAP, KIA. Killed in a CT action in the operational area, at the age of 19. His semi-military funeral was held at Warren Hills Cemetery, Salisbury, on 25 April

1978 – District Assistant Reuben MOYO, B Troop, ARU (Mashonaland East), Intaf, KIA. A landmine was detonated electronically, by CTs, under the Puma driven by B Troop Commander SDO Dudley Wall, followed by an attack with mortars, RPGs and small arms in the Shinga area, Mudzi, Op Hurricane. DA Moyo was shot in the head and upper body and died in hospital several days later. He is buried in Essexvale. 4 CTs were killed in the incident.

1979 – Constable Jeremia CHIFUKA, Support Unit, BSAP, KIA. Killed in a CT action, at the age of 23. His semi-military funeral was held at Warren Hills Cemetery, Salisbury, on 26 April.

1979 – Gunner Jean-Claude DARNÉ, 1st Field Regiment, Rhodesian Artillery, killed on active service. Killed in an accidental shooting incident by a PATU stick, whilst the PATU stick was patrolling outside of the prescribed area. Mike Norton writes, "It was the last 3 days of Operation Enterprise, The Artillery guys were in the Chinamora TTL, just north of Munenga farm, where the PATU stick was deployed in ambush on a road the CTs often used over the Munenga dam wall. They saw/heard movement, and then saw the SFA and crossed the farm fence to attack. Wounded the SFA and killed Darné."

1979 – Private Dumai WATCH (not his surname), 1st Battalion, RAR, KIA. Died from wounds received in action. 

† Their names and sacrifices have not been forgotten †

 

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  • April 21, 2017
  • Piet Fourie
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