Today, 19 May, 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

19 May 1978: 7011316KT Rifleman Adriaan Adolf Jonker from the Midlands Commando died from a gunshot wound accidentally sustained as a result of an accidental discharge of a fellow soldiers rifle while he was serving in the Operational Area. He was 24.

19 May 1983: 7643867BG Lance Corporal Colin Watson Kindness from 4 SAI, attached to 61 Mechanised Battalion Group died from a gunshot wound accidentally sustained as a result of an accidental discharge of a fellow soldiers rifle while the platoon was ‘Falling In” during musketry training. He was 22.

19 May 1987: 77350957BG Rifleman John Barnard from Regiment Bloemspruit was killed in a military vehicle accident at Van Stadensrus. He was 25.

RHODESIAN BUSH WAR

One of the biggest tragedies of the Bush War occurred on 19 May 1972, when 12 members of the Regimental Band, HQ Company, 1st Battalion Rhodesian African Rifles, drowned in the Fuller Forest, Matetsi area, west of Wankie. Members of the band had been deployed on active service, and whilst the RL truck they were travelling in crossed a dam wall, the vehicle fell into the water. The weight of their webbing with ammo, grenades, water, etc., pulled them under.

  • • Private Phinias CHAPANGE (32), buried in Gutu.
  • • Lance Corporal Silvanos Mashona DUDZIRAYI (31), buried in Bikita. 
  • • Private Thomas MANDUNA (26), buried in Nuanetsi. 
  • • Private Josephat MANGANDURA (29), buried in Gutu. 
  • • Lance Corporal Kefasi MUCHATO (30), buried in Gutu. 
  • • Private Benjamin MURAMBIWA (32), buried in Que Que. 
  • • Lance Corporal Tshaye NDAZA (44), buried in Lupane. 
  • • Corporal Godfrey NGOROVANI (34), buried in Gokwe. 
  • • Private Marandu NYIKADZINO (30), buried in Buhera. 
  • • Private Chirambgwa RANGANAYI (32), buried in Gutu. 
  • • Col Sgt (Drum Major) Ernest TAKAWIRA (38) (Post Exemplary Service Medal), buried in Gutu. 
  • • Private Maboko WUNGANAYI (29), buried in Bikita.

1975 – Michael "Mike" SPARKS, died on active service.

1976 – District Security Assistant Mukwena MABIKA, Keep Protection, Intaf, killed on active service. Killed at Bikita, Op Repulse.

1976 – Dip Attendant, Never Mwane NGENI, ADF, Intaf, murdered. Killed by CTs near Umtali, Op Thrasher.

1976 – Extension Assistant Joel SIKWEKWETE, ADF, Intaf, murdered. Killed by CTs at Rusape, Op Thrasher.

1977 – Constable Lazarus CHARINDAPANZE, A Troop, Support Unit, BSAP, KIA. Died aged 22 in a vehicle ambush near Boli, Matibi 2 TTL, Op Repulse. Lazarus's funeral took place at Sipolilo on 24 May. See also C Clack and A Machimbirike.

1977 – National Service Patrol Officer Craig Paul CLACK, A Troop, Support Unit, BSAP, KIA. Died aged 19 in a vehicle ambush, Matibi II TTL, near Boli, Op Repulse. Tragically his death occurred on his first bush trip. His funeral took place in Bulawayo on 24 May. See also L Charindapanze and A Machimbirike.

1977 – Constable Angel Leonard MACHIMBIRIKE, A Troop, Support Unit, BSAP, KIA. Died aged 25 in a vehicle ambush near Boli, Matibi 2 TTL, Op Repulse. Angel was buried in Shabani on 22 May. See also L Charindapanze and C Clack.

1979 – Auxiliary Constable Elliot MUZENDA, Police Reserve, BSAP, killed on active service. Died in a vehicle accident, aged 34 years. Elliot's private funeral was held in Bere Township, Mashaba, on 23 May.

† Their names and sacrifices have not been forgotten †

 

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  • May 19, 2017
  • Piet Fourie
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