Today, 6 June, 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

06 Jun 1977: 73429177BC Corporal Salmon Petrus Claasen from the Technical Service Corps Training Centre died in 1 Military Hospital after being critically injured in a military vehicle accident. He was 20.

06 Jun 1978: 74540378PE Sergeant Coenrad Jacobus Theron from 32 Battalion Died of Wounds in 1 Military Hospital after suffering multiple shrapnel wounds in a friendly fire incident on 6 May 1978 when 140mm high explosive artillery shells fell short near Namuidi in Southern Angola during Operation Reindeer. He succumbed to his wounds on 6 June 1978. He was 19.

06 Jun 1979: 79396403PE Lance Corporal Hendrik Swart from SWA SPES was Killed in Action during a contact with SWAPO/PLAN insurgents in the Oshivello area. He was 24.

06 June 1980: 76305879BG Corporal Mario van Wyk from 32 Battalion was part of the same deployment as Joao, Braz and Van Der Walt who had all been killed on 4 June 1981 at Mutuanjamba. A group of SWAPO/PLAN insurgents had clashed with SADF units at Mulemba and were withdrawing northwards. A rough impromptu stopper group was set-up and they were rewarded when the insurgents walked into their ambush and a number were killed. Mario van Wyk was Killed in Action moments later after suffering multiple shrapnel wounds when a Soviet high explosive mortar bomb landed and exploded near him. He was 20

06 Jun 1981: 78559622BG Rifleman Robert Owen Brindle from SWA SPES died from a gunshot wound accidentally sustained as a result of a accidental discharge of a fellow soldiers rifle at Etale Base. He was 18.

06 Jun 1983: 82708975HG Rifleman Vincent Mandla Mthembu from 121 Battalion was Killed when his Buffel Troop Carrier overturned in Windhoek. He was 20.

06 June 1985: 71453674E Captain Curtis McLeod from 4 Squadron was killed when his Atlas MB326KM Impala Mk II Serial No. 1092 crashed at Sandfontein near Lanseria while he was practicing low level aerobatics for a display for the 4 Squadron open day on 8 June 1985. The aircraft was seen to go into a vertical climb, stall and drop vertically into a dive from which the pilot failed to recover. He was 29.

06 Jun 1985: 80286800BG 2/Lieutenant Markus Wynand Pearson from 7 SAI was Killed in Action when he triggered a Soviet POM-Z2 anti-personnel picket mine while on patrol in Southern Angola. He was 21.

06 Jun 1985: Two members from the south West Africa Police Counter-Insurgency Wing: Ops-K Division (Koevoet) were Killed in Action and Died of Wounds following a contact with SWAPO/PLAN insurgents in Northern Owamboland. Their Zulu 5 Casspir vehicle was hit by three Soviet RPG-7 anti-tank rockets. The driver, Special Sergeant Valentino was struck in the neck, stomach and hip by shrapnel and was killed instantly while Special Warrant Officer Tsitula was seriously wounded in both legs and right hip and later succumbed to his Wounds. The casualties were:

  • Special Warrant Officer J.M. Tsitula. He was 34.
  • Special Sergeant Lindu Valentino. He was 26.

06 Jun 1988: 84339126BG Airman Ian-Roy Francois Erasmus from the Air Force Gymnasium was killed in a private vehicle accident while returning to the Air Force Gymnasium from a weekend pass. He was 19.

06 Jun 1991: 87469698BG Rifleman Johannes Frederick Lombaard Nel from 8 SAI was accidentally killed when he was run over by a Ratel during field manoeuvres at the Army Battle School. He was 20.

RHODESIAN BUSH WAR

1976 – Constable Stanley Jemwa, Support Unit, BSAP, KIA. Died aged 21 from a gunshot wound, in a contact, The Downs, Mutasa, Op Thrasher. He was buried with military honours in Charter on 11 June.

1976 – Dip Supervisor, BEN KUWENYI, ADF, Intaf, murdered. Shot and killed by CTs, Nyatsanga Business Centre, St Swithins TTL, Inyanga (VR825423). He was 60 years old and is buried in Inyanga.

1978 – District Security Assistant Elvis CHAPARADZA, Keep Protection, Intaf, murdered. Murdered by CTs.

1979 – Trooper Stephen Christopher "Chaucer" HARTLEY, C Squadron, SAS, KIA. Died from gunshot wounds received in Gaza Province, Mozambique. Trooper Richard Hickman, as a result of having sustained serious wounds in this same contact, died the following day.

1979 – Guard Elliot MUKURUVA, RHQ Delta, Op Tangent, Guard Force, died on active service.

1980 – Lance Corporal Moses Thomas Edward WILSON, 2nd Battalion, Rhodesian Defence Regiment, died on active service. Died aged 24 years. Buried in the Athlone Cemetery, Bulawayo.

† Their names and sacrifices have not been forgotten †

 

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  • June 06, 2017
  • Piet Fourie
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