Category Archives: WW2

Commonwealth Memorial Parade 2019

COMMONWEALTH MEMORIAL GATES, LONDON – The 2019 Commonwealth Memorial Parade on Monday 11 March was particularly well attended by the South African Legion UK & Europe Branch.

Several Legionnaires, some with partners, mustered at Hyde Park Corner, to rub shoulders with military attachés, representatives of armed forces from across the Commonwealth, serving and retired members of the British Armed Forces of Commonwealth origin and ancestry, as well as delegations from the High Commissions of a multitude of Commonwealth member states.

The South African Legion delegation met in bright sunshine at 10:00 ahead of the parade (Spring has certainly sprung, but don’t stow your greatcoat quite yet). Logistics dispatches should note that all South Africans were uncharacteristically on time! This might have had something to do with the fact that some Legionnaires were under ‘spousal supervision’, which clearly ensured strict discipline.

We were soon introduced to the new Military Attaché to the South African High Commission in London, Brig Gen E Ramabu, with whom the South African Legion is already building a strong relationship of mutual cooperation.

Those Legionnaires who have attended regularly over the past few years were able to renew old stalwart acquaintances.

‘They shall grow not old’

A dignified service followed. Gurkha bugler sounded Last Post, followed by two minutes’ silence. After the bugle ‘Short Reveille’ or ‘Rouse’, a Ghurkha piper played the lament, and Guests of Honour were called by name to lay wreaths.

South African Military Attaché , Brig Gen E Ramabu, lays a wreath on behalf of the South African High Commission


Lgr Jose Lopes lays a wreath on behalf of the South African Legion

Jai Hind!

After the parade, guests adjourned to a nearby marquee for super refreshments and delicious snacks, provided as always by London’s Indian community.

Gesondheid!

Several of the South African Legion contingent subsequently repaired to a nearby pub to appropriately consider a successful day, and an appropriate ‘flying of the flag’ for both South Africa and the Legion.

 

Text by Lgr Andrew Bergman

Photography:

Lgr Theo Fernandes

Lgr Victor Ho


Three Ships Parade, Richmond

RICHMOND-ON-THAMES – The Annual Three Ships Parade took place in Richmond on 23 February and was followed by a Q1 Branch Meeting and Social.

In the week that the SA Legion UK & Europe pay respects to all Naval and Maritime losses by using the ships SS Mendi, HMSAS Southern Floe and SAS President Kruger as iconic symbols of these losses, a number of events took place culminating in the Three Ships Parade in London. The venue for this service was the Chapel and Cenotaph at Richmond Cemetery.

The England Team sets the bar for events ever higher with each event, and the welcoming hot drinks and biscuits were most appreciated as were the professionally designed and printed handouts.

From left to right, Regional Chair Cameron Kinnear, Standard Bearers Jose Lopes, Dave Wiseman, Graeme Scott, Lee Greed and bugler Bobby Crick.

Brian Parry and the Standards were superb in their turnout and drill, and the SA Legion Padre Craig Esterhuizen’s address was, as usual, entertaining and very relevant. Three poems were read out by Stuart Robertson, Johan De Villiers and Cameron Kinnear for each of the iconic ships.

Wreaths were laid by Johan De Vries, Stuart Roberston, DuToit Verster and Adrian de Villiers.

After the parade the guests adjourned to the RBL club at Teddington for the England Branch Q1 meeting and a social.

 

Text by Lgr Cameron Kinnear

Photography by Karen Parry, Theo Fernandes, and Victor Ho.


Airborne March, Arnhem, the Netherlands, 2018

On Saturday 1 September 2018, the 72nd edition of the Airborne March (Airborne Wandeltocht) took place in Oosterbeek, the site of many of the Operation Market Garden airborne landings just to the west of Arnhem in the Netherlands. It is the largest one-day commemorative march in the world and has taken place yearly on the first Saturday of September, since 1947.

The Airborne March is organised to remember the Battle of Arnhem which took place in 1944 and this year, it was marched by 32,809 participants from more than 20 different nationalities, one of whom was Lgr Charlie Wessels, who participated wearing her South African Legion colours and representing the Europe Branch. It’s the third time she has participated.

Participants represent all ages and backgrounds

The distances vary from 10 – 40 kilometres and the event is attended by people of all ages and backgrounds, including veterans, living relatives, soldiers, cadets and civilians, paying their respects. All routes start and end at the sports park Hartenstein in Oosterbeek.

The revenue from the march is used to enable veterans and their next of kin to come to the Netherlands and attend the commemorations in and around Arnhem.

Wreaths laid at the Airborne Cemetery in Oosterbeek

The atmosphere during the whole day can only be described as incredible. Marchers form up and register in the sports park before being ‘lead out’ past the Airborne Museum by one of the more than 30 Music Corps, who take part in the event.

Along the route there are stands selling refreshments, volunteers who assist with First Aid and general morale along the way and marchers (from all walks of life who join in on foot or in wheelchairs) who freely chat with each other and who all end up feeling like your ‘Brothers in Arms’.

The Cross of Sacrifice of the Commonwealth
War Graves Commission at the Airborne
Cemetery in Oosterbeek

The marching routes lead past the most important wartime locations in Oosterbeek, including the Airborne Cemetery, where over 1,700 British and Polish soldiers are buried. As jovial as the march is along the way, the atmosphere once you enter the Airborne Cemetery is in stark contrast and changes to quiet and respectful.

The local population in Oosterbeek make a real effort to let all participants and visitors feel welcome. They decorate the streets and the Pegasus flag flies proudly on each mast outside the homes. They even provide for snacks and water along the route and sit outside their homes to cheer the marchers on.

The distance you choose to march and the weight you carry, are all down to personal choice, it’s not a competition.

Regardless how far you chose to march, marching up that final hill in Oosterbeek before entering the festivities of the high street, takes some gritting of teeth. The happy tunes from the Music Corps leading the marchers back through the gates to collect their medals at the sport park and the cheering of the crowds, are quite overwhelming.

The author of this piece, Lgr Charlie Wessels
‘flying the flag’ for the SA Legion
at the Airborne Museum in Oosterbeek

As you approach the final part of the route… you march past the Airborne Museum and see the Para Veterans sitting in the front row with their beers, proudly looking on at the marchers by. Suddenly you realise again why you are there, taking part in this march and paying your respects. The pain from the weight of your bergen/daysack digging in to your shoulders and hips and the aching muscles of someone who has not tabbed (in far too long!!!) suddenly disappear… These veterans represent all of those… who gave their tomorrow… so that we could have our today…

Cheers to all who have taken part in this march over the past 72 years and especially, to those we are marching for.

We will remember them.

The 73rd edition of the Airborne March will take place on 7 September 2019

 © South African Legion (UK & Europe Branch) 2018

Text and pictures: Lgr Charlie Wessels

 


World War 2 Medals

Category : WW2

Understanding your Grandfather’s (or Fathers’) World War 2 medals.

This is the standard set received by many South Africans who fought in both the North/East African theatre of operations and the Italian campaign. These are in the correct order of precedence and from left to right they are:

1. The 1939 – 1945 Star – campaign medal awarded to all British and Commonwealth personnel who fought in any theatre of operations during WW2. The ribbon shows arms of service – Navy (dark blue), Army (red) and Air Force (light blue).

2. The Africa Star – campaign medal awarded to all British and Commonwealth personnel who fought in African theatre of operations. The ribbon is distinguished by the “Sahara” sand colour).

3. The Italy Star – campaign medal awarded to all British and Commonwealth combatants who fought in the Italy theatre of operations (distinguished by ribbon in the colours of the Italian flag).

4. The Defence Medal – campaign medal awarded for both Operational and non-Operational service during WW2 to British and Commonwealth service personnel (and civilians involved in Service to armed forces). The ribbon is symbolic of the air attacks on green land of UK and the Black out is shown by the two thin black lines.

5. The War Medal 1939-1945 – campaign medal for British and Commonwealth personnel who had served full-time in the Armed Forces or the Merchant Navy for at least 28 days between 3 September 1939 and 2 September 1945. The medal ribbon is distinguished by the colours of the British Union Flag/Jack.

6. The Africa Service Medal – a South African campaign medal for service during the Second World War, which was awarded to members of the South African Union Defence Forces, the South African Police and the South African Railways Police who served during WW2. The ribbon represents the Two Oaths taken (red tab for Africa Service Oath and the later General Service Oath) and the green and gold colours of South Africa.

Have a look at your Grandfather’s or Dad’s medals (or your Mum/ Grandmother’s) and see if they are in the right order and which of these six medals you now recognise.

Note: This is a very complex field and the intention is to show the basic outline, each of the medals has rather extensive qualifying criteria.

Posted for the SA Legion by Peter Dickens


HMSAS Southern Floe

Category : Articles , WW2

Badge of H.M.S.A.S. Southern Floe which was picked up in an Italian dugout in the Desert by a sergeant in the Royal Army Medical Corps during the North African Campaign. (SA Military History – http://samilitaryhistory.org/vol013hk.html)

11 February 1941

HMSAS Southern Floe was sunk by a mine off Tobruk with the loss of 27 men, with 1 sole survivor, Stoker C J Jones


A number of whalers were converted to anti submarine roles and commissioned into the South African Navy for service, they were part of the South African Seaward Defence Force anti-submarine flotilla.

Some of them were sent to the Mediterranean and based at Alexandria, Egypt – the HMSAS Southern Floe, the HMSAS Southern Sea and their sister ship the HMSAS Southern Maid – which is seen in this rare photograph in Alexandria Harbour (In the foreground is the South African Navy’s HMSAS Protea, a Flower-class corvette).

In 1941 – the HMSAS Southern Floe (Lt J E Lewis) and HMSAS Southern Sea arrived at Tobruk on 31 January 1941 to take over patrol duties from two of their two sister ships.

Although submarines were not a threat in the first six months of the Western Desert campaign, numerous floating mines pointed to the existence of extensive moored mine fields. Except for the sweeping of the narrow coastal traffic route and harbour entrances at this stage there had not yet been time to locate these fields with any accuracy, much less to clear them. The main duty of the two Southerns was alternately to patrol the nearest section of the swept channel and to escort shipping along it. The port at that time was subject to air raids, littered with sunken wrecks and possibly active ground-mines. On patrol, the duties were complicated by sandstorms that strong off-shore winds extended for many miles out to sea, resulting in low visibility, heavy cross-seas, and much discomfort to personnel. To these conditions were added the menace of the mine fields on one side and an ill-defined and unlighted coast on the other.

On the morning of 11 February Southern Sea arrived at the patrol rendezvous, two miles east of Tobruk, but found no sign of Southern Floe. This was reported but caused no concern at first; it had blown hard enough all night for the ship to find herself far from her station at dawn. However that evening, a passing destroyer picked up one man clinging to some wreckage – all that remained of Southern Floe and her company.

This sole survivor was Stoker C J Jones, RNVR (SA), lent from HMS Gloucester to fill a vacancy just before Southern Floe sailed from Alexandria. He was almost insensible after 14 hours in the water, but afterwards stated that he had been in the stokehold when, at about 04:00 there had been a heavy explosion and the ship had filled rapidly. In the darkness, he had found his way into the flooded engine-room and struggled out through the skylight as the ship sank. He had seen a few other persons in the water at that time and later had done his best to support a wounded man. In the absence of other evidence there is little doubt that a mine, either floating or moored, was the cause.

The loss of the ship, although but a trivial incident in a world war, came as a sudden and grievous blow to the flotilla and to the SDF. The ships had spent a bare month on the station and at home few were aware that they had arrived and had been in action. The casualties were the first naval losses suffered by the South African Seaward Defence Force and the sense of loss in the service was profound.

A relic of Southern Floe was brought to South Africa long after, in the form of a small brass ship’s badge, found amidst the other debris of battle 70 miles inland from Benghazi. Supposedly it had floated ashore, attached to a wooden fragment of the ship’s bridge, and been carried thence by an Italian souvenir-hunter.

After the war Stoker Jones, the sole survivor placed a memorial notice in the Cape Town newspapers. He continued to do this for many years until he also passed away.

Information from Naval-History.net

Southern Floe (SANF), ship loss
ANDERS, John, Steward, 69637 (SANF), MPK
BOWER, Robert, Stoker 1c, 69935 (SANF), MPK
BRAND, Leslie A, Able Seaman, 69828 (SANF), MPK
CAULFIELD, Patrick, Steward, 69802 (SANF), MPK
CHANDLER, Charles R D, Cook (S), 69613 (SANF), MPK
CHENOWETH, Richard, Stoker 1c, 67420 (SANF), MPK
FAIRLEY, Alexander E, Sub Lieutenant, SANF, MPK
FARRINGTON, Charles E, Stoker Petty Officer, P/KX 81373, MPK
FRIEDLANDER, Cecil A, Able Seaman, 114703 (SANF), MPK
GARDINER, Elliott, Able Seaman, 67260 (SANF), MPK
GREENACRE, John H, Leading Seaman, 69677 (SANF), MPK
HEASMAN, Gratwicke E E, Engine Room Artificer 4c, 69784 (SANF), MPK
HOGG, Roy S, Sub Lieutenant, SANF, MPK
INNES, Ian McK, Sub Lieutenant, SANF, MPK
MARSH, Reginald H Y, Able Seaman, 69911 (SANF), MPK
MITCHELL, William N, Able Seaman, 69787 (SANF), MPK
NEL, Eloff R, Able Seaman, 69635 (SANF), MPK
NICHOLSON, Douglas O, Able Seaman, 66833 (SANF), MPK
PUGH, John R, Able Seaman, 66877 (SANF), MPK
ROBERTSON, William M, Able Seaman, C/SSX 25307, MPK
RYALL, David R, Able Seaman, 69999 (SANF), MPK
SHIMMIN, William, Leading Stoker, 69661 (SANF), MPK
SIENI, Joseph F, Able Seaman, 69788 (SANF), MPK
SNELL, Harold W, Leading Telegraphist, 69827 (SANF), MPK
STANLEY, Gordon J, Able Seaman, 66963 (SANF), MPK
WALTON, Dudley N, Sub Lieutenant, SANF, MPK
YOUNG, Reginald A J, Able Seaman, D/J 87257, MPK


Sunderland Flying Boats of Lake Umsingazi

 

THE SUNDERLAND FLYING BOATS OF LAKE UMSINGAZI

By Jeff Gaisford
Jeff Gaisford has a deep interest in the flying boats which operated in Zululand and this led to the writing of this article. It first appeared in World Air News and is reprinted here with kind permission.

262 Squadron RAF used Catalina Bay at the southern end of Lake St Lucia as a forward operational base in 1943 and ‘44.  Initially they flew the sturdy Catalina flying boats, but these were gradually replaced by much larger four engined Short Sunderland Mark 5 flying boats. These drew over five foot of water and St Lucia was too shallow for them. This forced the Squadron to look for an alternative landing site with deeper water. They chose Lake Umsingazi at Richards Bay, and the squadron relocated there lock stock and barrel in the course of 1944.  In 1945, there being so many South Africans on strength in 262 Squadron, it was decided to transfer the whole operation to the South African Air Force. This was duly done and 35 Squadron SAAF came into being. The squadron base was at Congella in Durban and this required the big flying boats to land in the harbour. They were forbidden to land there at night, however, due to various after dark hazards that included the large number of small “fishing”craft, and the flying boats had to land at Lake Umsingazi.

A 35 Sqn SAAF Sunderland with the registration letters RB-N crashed and sank there on the night of 1 November 1956 in bad weather after a navigation exercise to Europa Island in the Mozambique Channel.

A young crewman, 18 year-old Henry van Reenen, survived the crash and, now a respectable businessman in Gauteng, recently told me his tale:
“Three Sunderlands flew on the navigation exercise from Durban to Europa Island – their serial numbers were RB-D and RB-N which was the aircraft I flew in. I cannot recall the registration of the third one. En route our radar set failed. Great waterspouts were rising all around us, forcing us to dodge backwards and forwards and it wasn’t long before our navigators had no idea where we were. Without radar we were almost blind.

The other two Sunderlands completed the exercise, turned for home and landed safely at Lake Umsingazi. We eventually packed it in in the late afternoon and headed back towards the South African coast. A thunderstorm had come up, waterspouts kept forcing us to change course, so we headed towards Durban and then turned up-coast in order to find our landing area on Lake Umsingazi.  Late that night we sighted the lights of the flarepath on Lake Umsingazi and came down on our final approach. The thunderstorm was still raging with high winds, very heavy rain, hail and great flashes of lightning that lit the sky around us.

The Sunderland was about 60 feet off the water when for no apparent reason we dropped onto the surface, hitting very hard. We bounced, then hit the water again. I fly privately now but in those days wind-shear was a little- understood factor.  Our pilot, Capt Naude, rammed the throttles open to abort the landing and go around once more, but at about 100 feet the Sunderland stalled under full power and crashed into the lake. The nose was partially broken off, the co-pilot Lt Col Thys Uys was flung bodily through the cockpit canopy and landed almost 200 yards away. Capt Naude’s harness snapped and he was flung back-first against the instrument panel, injuring his back. I was seated in the wardroom below the flight deck with three other crewmen and was catapulted against the bulkhead ahead of us and knocked unconscious. Two of these crewmen were the only fatalities. I came to a few minutes later underwater and in pitch darkness. I found some air trapped above me and, after taking a deep breath, swam back through the wardroom into the galley – there I opened a hatch that led to the flight deck, but this was also under water. There was a small perspex dome used by the navigator just aft the main canopy. I found some air trapped there and this gave me a few more gulps.
Acting more on instinct I swam along a passageway to the weapons deck intending to exit the Sunderland through one of two machine-gun hatches situated on either side of the fuselage just aft of the wing trailing edges. Some flame floats in this compartment had ignited and the interior of the compartment was aflame so I swam underneath the flames to get to the left hand hatch. The rest of the crew were sitting on the left hand wing and Jan Knoll, a Dutch radio officer, heard me yelling. He had been in the wardroom with us and had swum out through the galley and through the viciously sharp tangle of wreckage where the nose had been. He jumped into the water and helped me out, swimming with me to the wing where my friends pulled me up and out of the water. They battled to pull me up because a hook on my Mae West buoyancy jacket had caught on the wing trailing edge. All their pulling was pretty painful! I passed out from the pain of my injuries – I had broken both ankles – and only came to briefly on the boat taking us to shore.

We were given first aid and bundled into the back of 1947 Ford ambulance that bounced its way across a terribly rough track to the Empangeni Hospital. Both my feet were dangling off the end of the stretcher and were being mercilessly bounced up and down. One of the medics realised that I was in agony and they shifted me up a bit. At the hospital they cut off our flying suits and gave us another thorough wash! We were later flown to Durban and spent a few weeks recovering in Addington Hospital before being flown to Cape Town in another Sunderland,” he told me.

Richards Bay in those days was still very wild and the bodies of the two men who died in the crash were only recovered some days later because crocodiles were nosing around the wreck and keeping the divers away. Thys Uys was a bit of a legend in his own right having being involved in the attempted rescue of the survivors of a wrecked ship, the Dunedin Star, on the Namibian coast in 1939 flying a Ventura.
As a boy I saw the stripped  hull of the Sunderland being winched out of the Lake Msingazi in about 1958. Only recently have I found out that full salvage was not possible and the hull was let slip back into the lake.  A local man salvaged the right hand wing float at that time and converted it into a catamaran ski-boat powered by an old flathead Ford V8 engine and with one of those domed Perspex cake covers usually found in a Greek tearoom as a canopy. This contraption, looking like something from Startrek, actually went out to sea and must still be in the area somewhere!
The natural beauty of Lake St Lucia and Umsingazi has hidden this story for many years.
To the average visitor today the thought of those beautiful lakes being the scene of such amazing military aviation activity would be strange – but these events are a part of the fascinating history of Zululand and definitely part of the aviation history of South Africa.

This article first appeared in World Air News, and then the SAAF Museum website and is reprinted here with kind permission.


Jan Smuts and Isaac Ochberg

Category : Articles , WW2

 

You might remember heroic figures like Oskar Schindler (the famous “Schindler’s List”) who, during World War 2, rescued groups of Jews from certain annihilation. But did you know Jan Smuts also played a significant role in rescuing 200 Jewish orphans from the Ukraine in 1921? Here’s a little bit of unknown history involving an unlikely South African hero, Isaac Ochberg, and it’s one we can all stand proud of.

In the early 1920s, reports trickled through to South Africa of tragic forces occurring in the Ukraine. Following the collapse of the old Czarist Empire in 1917, rival Red and White armies were fighting for control. Although the battles did not start out as particularly anti-Semitic, the Jews’ condition deteriorated.

Famine was followed by typhoid epidemics for the entire population, but it was made worse for the Jews by pogroms. Ukrainian and Polish peasants joined forces with reactionary military forces to massacre Jews wherever they found them inside the Pale of Settlement.

In despairing letters smuggled through enemy lines, Jews begged their cousins in South Africa for help. These pleas immediately stirred South Africa’s Jewish communities. People asked at meetings across the country if at least the children could be rescued from the Ukraine. Before any organisation could step in, generous offers of financial and other assistance were made by Russian-born Cape Town businessman Isaac Ochberg.

Two questions became critical: How could the orphans be rescued from a war-torn region, and would the South African government create any difficulties in admitting them? Ochberg quickly met Jan Smuts, prime minister between 1919–1924, who gave the children entry visas. Smuts could have sunk the rescue plan in an instant, had he chosen to. His support was essential and warmly welcomed.

As reports of the Jews’ plight continued to arrive in South Africa, the size of the tragedy became clearer. 100,000-150,000 Jewish men, women and children were slaughtered by Ukrainian nationalists and another 400,000 Jewish orphans were starving. The next step was for someone to travel to Eastern Europe and make arrangements on the spot. Ochberg agreed to go. For two months Ochberg travelled by train, wagon and on horseback around the Pale, looking for orphaned children. The Ukrainian children knew only that “The Man From Africa”
was coming and he was going to take some of them away to a new home, on the other side of the world.

Ochberg’s worst problem was how to select which children to take and which he had to leave in Eastern Europe. So he decided to choose eight children from each institution, until he reached a total of exactly 200. Since the South African government required that the children had to be in good physical and mental health, careful selection was essential. In addition, only those who had lost BOTH parents were accepted.

In Pinsk alone, so many children had been orphaned that 3 new orphanages had to be opened. At first, Pinsk was so isolated by the fighting that the children were dependent solely on their own resources. There were no blankets, beds or clothes. Typhus broke out in one of the orphanages and the pogroms raged for a week at a time. As order was restored, food supplies began to trickle in, first from Berlin and then from the Joint Distribution Committee.

Ochberg moved from town to town, visiting Minsk, Pinsk, Stanislav, Lodz, Lemberg and Wlodowa, collecting orphans. How did he get the children out – on wagons.

Three months later, with the 200 children in London, he wrote to Jan Smuts in South Africa: “I have been through almost every village in the Polish Ukraine and Galicia and am now well acquainted with the places where there is at present extreme suffering. I have succeeded in collecting the necessary number of children, and I can safely say that the generosity displayed by South African Jewry in making this mission possible means nothing less than saving their lives. They would surely have died of starvation, disease, or been lost to our nation for other reasons. I am now in London with the object of arranging transport and I hope to be able to advise soon of my departure for South Africa with the children.”

A tremendous reception awaited the orphans when they came ashore in Cape Town. So large was the group of children that the Cape Jewish Orphanage was unable to house them all, so 78 went on to Johannesburg.

Ochberg died in 1937 while on an ocean voyage, 59 years old. He was buried in Cape Town at one of the largest funerals ever seen there. Ochberg left what was then the largest single bequest to the Jewish National Fund. The JNF used it to redeem a piece of land in Israel called Nahalat Yitzhak Ochberg – which included the kibbutzim of Dalia and Ein Hashofet.

An Ochberg dedication ceremony took place at Kibbutz Dalia on 19th of July 2011. For the thousands of descendants of his orphans, he is the reason they are alive.

Over the years various projects and films have been compiled, many of the original orphans’ children and grandchildren have been traced and have honoured Ochberg’s memory, South Africa’s very own “Oskar Schindler”.

Content and article sourced from The Jerusalem Post from an article by Lionel Slier 07/18/201. Researched and posted for the South African Legion by Peter Dickens.


South African Naval Losses in WW2

Casualties compiled by Don Kindell

ABRAHAMS, Henry, Able Seaman, CN/ 719204 (SANF), SANF, 19 November 1944, died

ADAMS, Douglas E H, Act/Able Seaman, RNVR, 66378 (SANF), SS Tunisia, 4 August 1941, ship loss (President III, O/P), MPK

ADAMS, Thomas A, Able Seaman, 67953 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

ADAMSON, William D, Ordinary Seaman, RNVR, 69001 (SANF), Repulse, 10 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

AINSLIE, Roy, Petty Officer, 66382 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 September 1940, died

ALLISON, Oswald H, Able Seaman, RNVR, 67349 (SA), Gloucester, 8 July 1940, bombing, killed

ANDERS, John, Steward, 69637 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

ANDERSON, Henry G, Able Seaman, 67501 (SANF), Hollyhock, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

ANDERSON, Richard W N, Able Seaman, 86082 (SANF), Syvern, 21 May 1941, killed

ANDERSON, Robert D, Engine Room Artificer 2c, 71067 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

ANGEL, Walter J H, Able Seaman, 67351 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

ATKIN, William B, Lieutenant SANF, Northern Duke, 26 January 1944, illness, died

AUSTIN-SMITH, John R, Ordinary Seaman, 67336 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

 

BAGSHAWE-SMITH, Philip R, Ordinary Seaman, 67337 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

BAGSHAWE-SMITH, Sydney Q, Able Seaman, 68454 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK (brothers from East London, Cape Province)

BAKER, Dennis E W, Ordinary Seaman, 68617 (SANF), Barham, 25 November 1941, ship loss, MPK

BARBER, Benjamin W R, Sub Lieutenant SANF, Copra, 25 February 1946, died

BARBER, Edgar F, Able Seaman, 67302 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

BARKER, Ronald E, Sub Lieutenant SANF, Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

BASTON, Douglas T, Act/Engine Room Artificer 4c, 68600 (SANF), Hollyhock, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

BATEMAN, T (initial only), Chief Engine Room Artificer, 71627 (SANF), SANF, 30 June 1943, died

BATES, John S, Stoker 2c, 68924 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

BAWDEN, Wilfred R, Stoker 2c, RNVR, 330425 (SANF), Orion, 16 September 1942, DOWS

BECKER, Stanley H, Able Seaman, 67474 (SANF), Carnarvon Castle, 5 January 1942, road accident, killed

BELL, Douglas S, Ty/Act/Leading Stoker, 67243 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

BENNETT, John F, Act/Engine Room Artificer 4c, 330351 (SANF), Hecla, 12 November 1942, ship loss, MPK

BERMAN, Nicholas, Ordinary Seaman, 616728 V (SANF), SANF, 22 November 1944, died

BESTEL, Emmanuel A N M, Lieutenant SANF, SANF, 21 September 1943, Diego Suarez, died

BESTER, A (initial only) T, Leading Stoker, 6640 (SANF), Africana (SANF), 15 April 1940, died

BESWETHERICK, Hedley C, Ordinary Seaman, RNVR, 86671 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

BETTS, Robert, Able Seaman, 68900 (SANF), SANF, 18 November 1943, died

BISSETT, Alexander, Lieutenant SANF, SANF, 16 June 1944, died

BLAKE, Robert E, Petty Officer, P 6572 (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

BOSHOFF, Christofel J, Able Seaman, 70339 (SANF), Blaauwberg (SANF), 10 August 1943, killed

BOSWELL, Louis F W, Chief Engine Room Artificer, 69756V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 14 November 1944, MPK

BOTES, John S, Stoker 2c, RNVR, 68924 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

BOTHA, Herkulas, Cook, 562093 V (SANF), SANF, 8 May 1944, died

BOTHA, J (initial only) F, Able Seaman, 585386 (SANF), SANF, 8 December 1945, died

BOWER, Robert, Stoker 1c, 69935 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

BRAND, Leslie A, Able Seaman, 69828 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

BROCKLEHURST, Peter S, Able Seaman, 70457 (SANF), Parktown (SANF), 21 June 1942, ship loss, MPK

BROWN, Ian H, Able Seaman, 71719 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

BRUCE, Alexander M, Stoker 2c, 67907 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

BRUCE, John, Able Seaman, 67355 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

BRYSON, Neil W, Ordinary Telegraphist, 69147 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

BUCHANAN, Alexander, Able Seaman, 67934 (SANF), Birmingham, 20 April 1942, died

BUITENDACH, James M, Stoker 2c, 69223 (SANF), Hollyhock, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

BURNIE, Ian A, Able Seaman, 67786 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

BYRNE, Patrick, Lieutenant SANF, Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

 

CALDER, Frank T, Ordinary Seaman, 67971 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

CAMPBELL, Roy M, Able Seaman, 67318 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

CARLELSE, Frederick, Able Seaman, CN/ 72004 (SANF), Soetvlei (SANF), 29 September 1942, died

CARTER, Frederick G, Able Seaman, 67345 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

CASSON, William, Able Seaman, 252935 V (SANF), Tordonn (SANF), 10 May 1941, died

CAULFIELD, Patrick, Steward, 69802 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

CHANDLER, Charles R D, Cook (S), 69613 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

CHENOWETH, Richard, Stoker 1c, 67420 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

CHILTON, Ronald H D, Ordinary Seaman, 67335 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

CHRISTIAN, J (initial only) W, Able Seaman, CN/ 71965 (SANF), SANF, 5 May 1945, died

CLARE, Frederick W, Chief Petty Officer, 69599 V (SANF), SANF, 3 June 1945, died

CLARKE, Reginald E, Ty/Lieutenant Commander SANF, Adamant, 24 July 1945, air crash, MPK

CLAYTON, Frederick H, Act/Engine Room Artificer 4c, 68102 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

COCHRANE, Joseph, Engine Room Artificer 3c, P 68947 (SANF), SS Empress Of Canada, 13 March 1943, ship loss (Pembroke, O/P), MPK

COMMERFORD, Noel P, Able Seaman, RNVR, 66493 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

COMMERFORD, Terence, Ordinary Seaman, 330258 (SANF), Express, 21 June 1942, died

COOK, John A, Stoker 1c, 70256 (SANF), Parktown (SANF), 21 June 1942, ship loss, MPK

COOK, W (initial only), Leading Stoker, 70527 V (SANF), SANF, 8 August 1945, died

CRAGG, Ronald F, Able Seaman (DEMS), 66488 (SANF), SS Llandilo, 2 November 1942, ship loss (President III, O/P), MPK

CRAWFORD, Cecil E, Act/Engine Room Artificer 4c, RNVR, 67922 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

CROSSLEY, Alfred H, Sub Lieutenant SANF, Saunders, 7 March 1943, MPK

 

DANIELS, Adam, Stoker, 72034 (SANF), SANF, 28 January 1944, died

DAVIE, William, Stoker 1c, 70681 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

DE CASTRO, Alfred T, Stoker 1c, 67914 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

DE KLERK, John, Ordinary Seaman, 585868 V (SANF), SANF, 4 May 1944, died

DE KOCK, Victor P De C, Ty/Lieutenant SANF, Saunders, 7 March 1943, MPK

DELL, Rodney, Able Seaman, 68866 (SANF), Adriat (SANF), 24 March 1943, killed

DICKSON, M (initial only) A, Sub Lieutenant SANF, SANF, 17 October 1946, died

DIXON, Robert, Able Seaman, CN/ 584276 (SANF), SANF, 11 January 1945, died

DIXON, Serfas, Able Seaman, 67743 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

DORE, Frank B, Act/Able Seaman, RNVR, 67218 (SANF), ST La Carriere, 25 February 1942, ship loss (President III, O/P), MPK

DRUMMOND, Valentine W, Able Seaman, 68043 (SANF), Edinburgh, 30 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

DRURY, Frederick, Ordinary Seaman, 68315 (SANF), Sotra, 29 January 1942, ship loss, MPK

DU PREEZ, Charles P H, Able Seaman, 68175 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

DUTTON, Charles C, Stoker 2c, RNVR, 68949 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

 

EDWARDS, Ronald E, Ordinary Seaman, 67384 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

ELLIOT, Edward R, Leading Seaman, 66584 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

ENGELBEEN, Leslie C, Able Seaman, 562235 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

EVENPOEL, Albert, Stoker 2c, 67909 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

 

FAIRLEY, Alexander E, Sub Lieutenant SANF, Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

FEW, Jim, Able Seaman, 67744 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

FLANAGAN, Terrence D, Able Seaman, 587088 (SANF), SANF, 5 May 1946, died

FLINT, John M, Act/Able Seaman (DEMS), P 562749 (SANF), SS Empire Lake, 15 July 1943, ship loss (President III, O/P), MPK

FLORENCE, John, Stoker, CN/ 71982 V (SANF), SANF, 18 January 1944, died

FRIEDLANDER, Cecil A, Able Seaman, 114703 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

FROST, M (initial only) L, Able Seaman, CN/ 71804 (SANF), Receiffe (SANF), 17 August 1942, died

FULLFORD, Watton, Chief Petty Officer, 69711 (SANF), SANF, 8 June 1946, died

 

GARDINER, Elliott, Able Seaman, 67260 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

GEFFEN, Sender, Stoker 1c, 68035 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

GERAGHTY, Herbert C, Able Seaman, 67338 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

GILBRIDE, Charles S, Lieutenant (Sp) SANF, Goede Hoop (SANF), 29 December 1946, died

GITTINS, Victor L, Ordinary Seaman, 69325 (SANF), Assegai, 27 January 1943, died

GLENN, Paul V, Ordinary Seaman, 68906 (SANF), Barham, 25 November 1941, ship loss, DOW

GREENACRE, John H, Leading Seaman, 69677 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

GROGAN, Graham B, Able Seaman, 67343 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

 

HAINES, Eric G, Able Seaman, 67697 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

HALLIFAX, Guy W, Rear Admiral SANF, Director of SA Forces, 28 March 1941, accident, killed

HANSLO, Raymond F, Able Seaman, RNVR, 68295 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

HARLE, Paul A, Petty Officer, 71796 (SANF), SANF, 3 October 1943, died

HARRIS, R (initial only) H, Telegraphist, 330488 (SANF), SANF, 16 December 1943, died

HAWKINS, Reginald D, Able Seaman, 66700 (SANF), Cornwall, 4 March 1942, illness, died

HAYES, Richard T, Ordinary Seaman, 68499 (SANF), Barham, 25 November 1941, ship loss, MPK

HEARD, George A, Lieutenant SANF, Goede Hoop (SANF), 8 August 1945, died

HEASMAN, Gratwicke E E, Engine Room Artificer 4c, 69784 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

HENDERSON, Alexander P, Chief Engine Room Artificer, 562099 (SANF), SANF, 1 April 1943, Benghazi Libya, killed

HOGG, Roy S, Sub Lieutenant SANF, Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

HOLT, Albert E, Telegraphist, 69576 (SANF), Southern Maid (SANF), 3 June 1941, killed

HOOK, Aubrey C, Able Seaman, 67862 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

HORNE, P (initial only) D, Chief Petty Officer, 66661 V (SANF), SANF, 31 March 1945, died

HOWARD, Harold D, Signalman, 67289 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

HOWDEN, Russell K, Ty/Sub Lieutenant SANF, ML 1163, 4 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

HOWE, Horace G, Ordinary Seaman, RNVR, 68680 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

HUBBARD, Wallace S, Able Seaman, 67960 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

HUGHES, T (initial only) J, Stoker, 71383 (SANF), SANF, 10 May 1941, died

 

INNES, Ian Mck, Sub Lieutenant SANF, Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

ISAACS, N (initial only), Able Seaman, CN/ 584368 V (SANF), SANF, 14 May 1946, died

 

JACOBZ, Frank H, Stoker 1c, 70374 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

JAGGER, Leslie J, Lieutenant SANF, 70016 (SANF), Parktown (SANF), 21 June 1942, ship loss, MPK

JAMES, H (initial only), Steward, CN/ 72252 (SANF), Gonding (SANF), 9 May 1943, died

JAMES, Victor F, Ordinary Seaman, 67303 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

JANSEN, S (initial only) C, Able Seaman, CN/ 584477 V (SANF), SANF, 4 October 1945, died

JENKINS, Edward G, Engine Room Artificer, 66720 V (SANF), SANF, 14 September 1944, died

JENSEN, Niels P, Able Seaman, 67347 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

JOHNSTONE, Henry N, Lieutenant Commander (E) SANF, 66727, Birmingham, 18 August 1942, died

JUBY, Kenneth J, Ordinary Seaman, 69211 (SANF), Hollyhock, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

 

KEENEY, Frederick W, Able Seaman, 67748 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

KEET, H (initial only) M T, Able Seaman, 586028 (SANF), SANF, 4 May 1946, died

KEITH, Kenneth I B, Able Seaman, RNVR, 66742 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

KEMACK, Brian N, Signalman, 67883 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

KEMERY, S (initial only) P, Leading Writer, 67275 (SANF), SANF, 20 February 1946, died

KEMP, Thomas, Able Seaman, CN/ 71015 V (SANF), SANF, 20 September 1944, died

KENDRICK, George, Stoker 2c, 67910 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

KENYON, Graeme A B, Able Seaman, RNVR, 68002 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

KEOWN, R (initial only) J, Able Seaman, CN/ 71845 (SANF), SANF, 9 June 1945, died

KERSTOFFEL, H (initial only), Stoker, 72310 (SANF), SANF, 14 September 1945, died

KEYTEL, Roy, Able Seaman, 67296 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

KIMBLE, Dennis C, Act/Engine Room Artificer 4c, 67600 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

KIRSTEN, Monty G W, Able Seaman, RNVR, 68917 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

KONIG, E (initial only), Stoker, 584989 V (SANF), SANF, 27 June 1947, died

KRAUSE, Frederick E, Able Seaman, 68321 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

 

LA CHARD, Edwin, Lieutenant Commander SANF, SANF, 20 May 1943, died

LA GRANGE, Antony M, Sub Lieutenant (A) SANF, 1772 Sqn Indefatigable, 28 July 1945, air operations, MPK

LAMONT, J (initial only), Steward, 71402 (SANF), SANF, 24 February 1945, died

LAW, Edward, Act/Engine Room Artificer 4c, RNVR, 66760 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

LEACH, Peter A D H, Stoker 2c, 69225 (SANF), Hollyhock, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

LENZ, William, Able Seaman, 69544 (SANF), SANF, 29 August 1943, died

LIDDLE, John, Lieutenant SANF, Barbrake, 8 August 1945, MPK

LLOYD, George H, Act/Engine Room Artificer 4c, 330353 (SANF), Hecla, 12 November 1942, ship loss, MPK

LOUW, Joseph, Stoker, CN 72175 (SANF), Stork, 2 December 1943, illness, died

LUCAS, A (initial only) W, Able Seaman, 152875 (SANF), SANF, 28 May 1943, died

LUCAS, E (initial only) W R, Chief Engineman, 66756 (SANF), SANF, 4 October 1939, died

 

MACWHIRTER, Cecil J, Ty/Sub Lieutenant (A) SANF, 851 Sqn Shah, 14 April 1944, air crash, MPK

MARSH, Reginald H Y, Able Seaman, 69911 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

MATTHEWS, George A, Stoker 1c, 70728 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

MCCARTHY, Henry F, Ordinary Seaman, 67223 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

MCDAVID, William K, Stoker 2c, RNVR, 69138 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

MCEWAN, William A, Steward, 69686 (SANF), Parktown (SANF), 21 June 1942, ship loss, MPK

MCINTYRE, Norman G, Able Seaman, 67446 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

MCINTYRE, William G, Cook (S), 585360 (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

MCLARTY, William D, Leading Stoker, 562246 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

MCLEAN, Godfrey, Able Seaman, 562455 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

MCLEAN, Richard, Stoker, 562567 (SANF), Smalvlei (SANF), 29 November 1943, died

MCLELLAN, Robert, Ordinary Telegraphist, 67897 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

MERRYWEATHER, John, Able Seaman, 67952 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

MEYRICK, Walter, Ordinary Signalman, 68155 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

MITCHELL, William A, Stoker 1c, RNVR, 68796 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

MITCHELL, William N, Able Seaman, 69787 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

MOORE, Albert, Able Seaman, 67416 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

MORRIS, Cyril D, Ordinary Seaman, 68932 (SANF), Barham, 25 November 1941, ship loss, MPK

MORRIS, Rodney, Ordinary Signalman, 68596 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

MORROW, Douglas E, Able Seaman, 67989 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

MOSCOS, John G, Leading Writer, 66786 (SANF), SS Ceramic, 7 December 1942, ship loss (SANF, O/P), MPK

MURPHY, J (initial only), Able Seaman, CN/ 72256 (SANF), SANF, 16 August 1942, died

 

NEL, Eloff R, Able Seaman, 69635 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

NICHOLLS, John, Yeoman of Signals, 66824 V (SANF), SANF, 19 December 1943, died

NICHOLSON, Douglas O, Able Seaman, 66833 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

NICOLSON, Andrew, Cook, 63827 (SANF), Disa (SANF), 13 October 1939, died

NIGHTSCALES, Norman, Writer, 68148 (SANF), Fidelity, 30 December 1942, ship loss, MPK

NILAND, St John E, Able Seaman, 209905 (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

NORTMAN, Willem, Stoker, 590608 V (SANF), SANF, 28 June 1946, died

NOWLAN, Francis C, Able Seaman, RNVR, 67409 (SANF), Gloucester, 8 July 1940, bombing, DOW

 

OLLERHEAD, Owen, Lieutenant SANF, SANF, 14 November 1946, died

ORGILL, C (initial only) B, Able Seaman, CN/ 71947 (SANF), SANF, 14 May 1943, died

ORTON, Charles P, Able Seaman, 68009 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

 

PAGE, Robert, Sub Lieutenant SANF, SANF, 29 November 1943, died

PALMER, Walter A, Able Seaman, RNVR, 68344 (SANF), Cornwall, 6 April 1942, ship loss (rescued aboard HMS Enterprise), DOW

PEERS, Charles V, Able Seaman, 562653 (SANF), Hecla, 12 November 1942, ship loss, MPK

PERRY, Desmond A, Petty Officer, 71211 (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

PETERS, Norman, Leading Stoker, 66847 (SANF), SANF, 3 January 1943, died

PETERSON, W (initial only) J, Able Seaman, CN/ 72184 (SANF), SANF, 4 September 1942, died

PFAFF, C (initial only) E, Petty Officer Stoker, 562721 V (SANF), SANF, 20 April 1945, died

PITTS, S (initial only) L, Able Seaman, CN/ 564203 (SANF), SANF, 8 November 1945, died

PLATT, Ronald M, Petty Officer, 67160 V (SANF), President III, 26 February 1943, accident, killed

POGGENPOEL, D (initial only) B, Able Seaman, CN/ 71950 V (SANF), SANF, 7 June 1947, died

POVEY, Leonard, Able Seaman, 71182 V (SANF), SANF, 31 March 1945, died

PRICE, David, Able Seaman, RNVR, P/68529 (SANF), Niger, 6 July 1942, ship loss, MPK

PUGH, John R, Able Seaman, 66877 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

 

RANKIN, Cecil R, Signalman, 67879 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

RAPHAEL, Philip R, Able Seaman, 67841 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

RASMUSSEN, Victor J S, Leading Telegraphist, 66920 (SANF), Dunedin, 24 November 1941, ship loss, MPK

RAVENS, Albert, Able Seaman, CN/ 72213 V (SANF), SANF, 31 March 1944, died

REDMAN, Roland A, Leading Stoker, 67406 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

REHR, Cecil, Able Seaman, 69877 (SANF), Roodepoort (SANF), 25 September 1942, died

REID, Kenneth H, Signalman, 562143 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

RICHARDSON, Ronald P, Able Seaman, 67494 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

ROBBERTS, Kaspar, Petty Officer, P/ 5285 (SANF), SANF, 1 July 1943, died

ROSS, Robert, Stoker 2c, 69119 (SANF), SS Laconia, 1 October 1942, ship loss (Victory, O/P), DOWS

RUITERS, Walter, Stoker, CN/ 72081 (SANF), SANF, 21 July 1942, died

RYALL, David R, Able Seaman, 69999 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

 

SALCOMBE, Francis R, Stoker 1c, 58589 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

SCHILDER, R (initial only) D, Leading Seaman, CN 71826 V (SANF), SANF, 2 December 1945, died

SCOTT, Clifford, Ordinary Telegraphist, 66973 (SANF), Jaguar, 26 March 1942, ship loss, MPK

SCOTT, William J, Able Seaman, 68007 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

SEVEL, Harry, Stoker 1c, 68100 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

SHIELDS, Eric E M, Lieutenant SANF, Pembroke IV, 12 April 1944, died

SHIMMIN, William, Leading Stoker, 69661 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

SIENI, Joseph F, Able Seaman, 69788 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

SIMON, Frederick, Stoker, CN/ 72046 V (SANF), SANF, 8 May 1945, died

SLATER, Bryan M, Able Seaman, 67358 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

SMITH, Ian R, Electrical Artificer 4c, 68478 (SANF), Hecla, 12 November 1942, ship loss, MPK

SMITH, Matthew S, Able Seaman, 67359 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

SMITH, P (initial only), Able Seaman, CN/ 72263 (SANF), SANF, 7 April 1942, died

SNELL, Harold W, Leading Telegraphist, 69827 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

SONDERUP, Arthur W, Able Seaman, 67356 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

SPENCE, Noel W, Ordinary Seaman, RNVR, 68732 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

SQUIRES, John E, Ordinary Seaman, RNVR, 68728 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

ST CLAIR-WHICKER, Willie H, Able Seaman, 67292 (SANF), SANF, 21 September 1941, died

STADLANDER, Rowland C, Stoker 1c, 67400 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

STANLEY, Gordon J, Able Seaman, 66963 (SANF), Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

STAPELBERG, Willem J, Steward, 562221 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

STEELE, Ewen, Able Seaman, 71272 V (SANF), Southern Sea (SANF), 5 October 1943, killed

STEPHEN, Eric B, Ordinary Seaman, RNVR, 68861 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

STOKOE, Cyril A M, Act/Leading Seaman, 67264 V (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

SUTTON, Donald A, Able Seaman, 70426 (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

SUTTON, George A M, Leading Seaman, 586403 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

SWANEPOEL, S (initial only), Cook, 7112 (SANF), SANF, 21 July 1946, died

SWANN, Lawrence T, Stoker 1c, RNVR, 68710 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

SYMONS, Maurice M, Able Seaman, 68245 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

 

THOMPSON, Walter E H, Able Seaman, 67360 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

THOMPSON, J (initial only) R, Stoker, 330669 (SANF), SANF, 18 August 1947, died

THORP, Edward C, Signalman, 67852 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

THORPE, Francis D, Able Seaman, 67462 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

THORPE, Maurice, Stoker 2c, RNVR, 69140 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

TITUS, J (initial only) J, Able Seaman, CN/ 584418 V (SANF), SANF, 9 April 1947, died

TOMS, Ivanhoe S, Able Seaman, 67709 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

TRAFFORD, William O, Able Seaman, 71222 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

TREAMER, Arthur P, Petty Officer, 71109 (SANF), Parktown (SANF), 21 June 1942, ship loss, MPK

TREISMAN, Gerald, Steward, 584730 V (SANF), SANF, 10 February 1945, died

TROUT, A (initial only) N, Able Seaman, CN/ 72133 (SANF), Stork, 4 August 1942, died

TURNER, N (initial only) J, Able Seaman, CN/ 562915 (SANF), SANF, 11 December 1945, died

 

UNSWORTH, Owen P (also known as R K Jevon), Ordinary Seaman, 69089 (SANF), Barham, 25 November 1941, ship loss, MPK

 

VAN AARDT, S (initial only), Stoker, CN/ 721490 (SANF), SANF, 22 May 1945, died

VAN DORDRECHT, William H, Able Seaman, 67851 (SANF), Edinburgh, 30 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

VAN DYK, Cecil H, Able Seaman, 67404 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

VAN GRAAN, A (initial only), Able Seaman, CNN/ 957 (SANF), SANF, 10 July 1946, died

VAN NOIE, Norman, Able Seaman, CN/ 72134 (SANF), SANF, 20 September 1941, died

VAN WYNGAARDT, F (initial only) A, Able Seaman, 585610 V (SANF), SANF, 21 July 1945, died

VERSFELD, Peter H S, Able Seaman, RNVR, 68859 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

VICKERS, Colin P, Able Seaman, 68296 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

VILJOEN, Dennis A, Telegraphist, 70984 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

VINK, Benjamin F, Ordinary Seaman, RNVR, 68860 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

VORSTER, Jack P, Able Seaman, 67755 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

 

WAKE, Vivian H, Ty/Lieutenant (A) SANF, 815 Sqn Landrail, 28 March 1945, air crash, MPK

WALTON, Dudley N, Sub Lieutenant SANF, Southern Floe (SANF), 11 February 1941, ship loss, MPK

WATSON, George, Lieutenant SANF, SANF, 15 October 1944, died

WEBBER, Reginald, Able Seaman, 67361 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

WELCOME, J (initial only) J, Able Seaman, CN/ 72270 (SANF), SANF, 19 July 1945, died

WESTON, Grant E, Ordinary Seaman, RNVR, 68498 (SANF), Phoebe, 27 August 1941, torpedoed, killed

WHITE, Charles W, Petty Officer, 562200 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

WHITE, Edward G, Stoker, 68026 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

WHYMARK, Vivian G, Ordinary Seaman, 69024 (SANF), Barham, 25 November 1941, ship loss, MPK

WIBLIN, Eric R, Able Seaman, 67717 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

WILD, Ernest A, Able Seaman, 67929 (SANF), Neptune, 19 December 1941, ship loss, MPK

WILLETT, Amos A S, Stoker 1c, 67240 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

WILLIAMS, Dastrey S, Leading Seaman, 67047 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

WILLIAMSON, Walter N, Able Seaman, 67803 (SANF), Dorsetshire, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

WILLSON, Gerald F, Stoker 2c, RNVR, 69006 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

WRIGHT, Gerald V, Act/Ordnance Artificer 4, 67375 (SANF), Gloucester, 22 May 1941, ship loss, MPK

WRIGHT, Thomas H, Able Seaman, RNVR, 68039 (SANF), Cornwall, 5 April 1942, ship loss, MPK

WULFF, Emil F, Leading Seaman, 562466 V (SANF), Treern (SANF), 12 January 1945, ship loss, MPK

 

YATES, Philip R, Supply Assistant, 67570 (SANF), Hermes, 9 April 1942, ship loss, MPK


Joe Slovo, Signaller, WW2

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Category : Articles , WW2

 

This “rooigevaar” (Red Danger) communist was also a South African Army world war 2 veteran – Joe Slovo (left of picture). Serving as a Signaler in combat operations for the South African forces in North Africa and Italy. His story reflects some amazing twists and turns in South African military history, much of it very unknown.

Slovo was born in Obeliai, Lithuania to a Jewish family which emigrated to the Union of South Africa escaping Jewish persecution in Europe when he was eight.

Slovo first encountered socialism in South Africa through his school-leaving job as a clerk for a pharmaceutical wholesaler. He joined the National Union of Distributive Workers and had soon worked his way up to the position of shop steward, where he was responsible for organizing at least one mass action.

The Communist Party in South Africa has an interesting start and it’s not the “Black revolutionary” movement most people perceive it to be now, originally it was started by white South Africans – and in fact it initially concerned itself only with “whites only” workers rights.

The Communist Party of South Africa was founded in 1921 under the leadership of William H Andrews, a Briton who came to Johannesburg to work on the mines. The SA Communist Party first came to prominence during the armed insurrection by white mineworkers in 1922, so brutally suppressed by Jan Smuts’ government.

The large mining concerns, facing labour shortages and wage pressures, had announced their intention of liberalising the rigid colour bar within the mines and elevate some blacks to minor supervisory positions. (The vast majority of white miners mainly held supervisory positions over the labouring black miners.)

Despite having opposed racialism from its inception, the Communist Party of South Africa (CPSA) supported the white miners in their call to preserve wages and the colour bar with the slogan “Workers of the world, unite and fight for a white South Africa!”.

With the failure of the rising, in part due to black workers failing to strike, the Communist Party was forced to adopt the “Native Republic” thesis which stipulated that South Africa was a country belonging to the Blacks. The Party thus reoriented itself at its 1924 Party Congress towards organising black workers and “Africanising” the party. Not quite the vision William Andrews, the CPSA founder, had in mind as white worker party and he promptly resigned as the party’s National Secretary.

During World War 2, the attitude to Communism by moderate white South Africans was a little different. Communist Russia was an ally of South Africa during the war and all over the country South Africans rallied to the support of Russia’s war effort against Nazi Germany by donating food, medicine and blood in very successful national “Aid for Russia” collection programs.

Joe Slovo joined the Communist Party of South Africa in 1942 and served on its central committee from 1953 (the same year its name was changed to the South African Communist Party, SACP). He avidly watched the news of the Allied fronts, especially the way in which Britain was working with Russia to aid her war effort against Hitler, so Joe Slovo volunteered for active duty, and served with South African forces in Egypt and Italy.

After the war he joined the Springbok Legion, a multiracial radical ex-servicemen’s organization which was essentially run by a group white war veterans who embraced Communist values. The Springbok Legion should not be confused with the South African Legion, it was a separate and very politically motivated veterans association – whereas the South African Legion was an apolitical veterans charity.

Being politically driven The Springbok Legion became one of key driving forces behind Sailor Malan’s “Torch Commando”, which was the first mass protest movement against Apartheid legislation and made up to a smaller degree by this political veterans association and to a far bigger degree of many members of the apolitical war veterans associations – ironically all mainly “white” South Africans (the franchise of been the country’s first mass protest movement against Apartheid does not belong to the ANC).

However it was the smallest of the war veterans associations – The “Springbok Legion” that took a direct “political” role – the Springbok Legion was founded in part by a senior South African Legion member – General van der Spuy (a pioneer of the South African Air Force), and its role took over from what he referred to as the South African Legion’s “painfully correct whisper of polite protest” and became a “shout” of protest instead.

The history of the Springbok Legion as a political entity is fascinating – initially formed in 1941 by members of the 9th Recce Battalion of the South African Tank Corps, along with the Soldiers Interests Committee formed by members of the First South African Brigade in Addis Ababa, and the Union of Soldiers formed by the same brigade in Egypt.

The aims and objectives of the Springbok Legion were enunciated in its ‘Soldiers Manifesto’. The Springbok Legion was open to all servicemen regardless of race or gender and was avowedly anti-fascist and anti-racist.

In collaborating with Sailor Malan’s Torch Commando (and by default Jan Smuts’ old United Party with which the Torch Commando was linked), The Springbok Legion had by now become a fully blown political entity, and the inevitable happened, as with any political party, The Springbok Legion gradually became politically radicalized. This was spearheaded by veterans who where also members of the Communist Party of South Africa (CPSA) and who joined The Springbok Legion and served in its upper and lower structures.

The targeting of the Springbok Legion by the Communist Party was the result of the South African Communist Party believing that it could use the veterans to re-order “white” political thinking in South Africa along communist lines.

This eventually resulted in the fracturing of the Springbok Legion as a whole as moderate “white” members, who made up the majority of its supporters became disenchanted with its increasingly militant leftist rhetoric.

Notable SACP communist party veterans to join the Springbok Legion in a leading capacity where none other than ex-servicemen such as Joe Slovo, but also Lionel Bernstein, Wolfie Kodesh, Jock Isacowitz, Jack Hodgson and Fred Carneso.

Aside from the Communists, Key members included future political and anti-apartheid leaders, such as Peter Kaya Selepe, an organiser of the African National Congress (ANC) in Orlando (he also served in WW2). Harry Heinz Schwarz, also a WW2 veteran eventually became a statesman and long-time political opposition leader against apartheid in South Africa and served as the South African ambassador to the United States during South Africa’s “transition” in the 90’s.

The National Party – which even as part of it’s pre-war make up had a fierce anti-communist stance was becoming increasingly alarmed by the rise of “white” war veterans against their policies – Sailor Malan’s Torch Commando at its peak attracted 250 000 followers – so they began seeking was of suppressing it. One of the mechanisms was to pass the Suppression of Communism Act.

The combined effect of the Act, and the broadening and deepening of the Communist rhetoric and politics was alienating the majority of Springbok Legion members rang a death knell for the Springbok Legion and the inevitable happened, the organisation folded as thousands of its “moderate” members left, returning to the either the apolitical MOTH (Memorable Order of Tin Hats) combat vets only order or the broader South African Legion which accommodated all veterans (or both).

The Communist Party members of The Springbok Legion who had played a pivot in its rise and its demise i.e. Joe Slovo, Lionel Bernstein, Wolfie Kodesh, Jack Hodgson and Fred Carneso were now banned and left with little other option they all then joined the African National Congress (ANC) and, given their experience as combat veterans, they also all joined its military wing Umkhonto we Sizwe under the command of Nelson Mandela.

The story of Joe Slovo – as the National Party’s arch communist enemy, and the story of the East/West divide over communism and the resultant Cold War, of which the South African Border War along Angola and internal armed insurrection (the “struggle”) all qualify – is well known.

That Joe Slovo was eventually identified as military target, alongside his wife Ruth Slovo (a daughter of well known Communist supporter prior to the war, Joe had met Ruth at Wits University), and again the assignation of Ruth Slovo is also well known.

The irony for the National Party, is that is was this “public enemy number one”, “Rooigevaar” (as the National Party labeled communists and liberals) Communist that extended the olive branch to the National Party – it was Joe Slovo, who in 1992 proposed the breakthrough in the negotiations to end apartheid in South Africa with the “sunset clause”. Slovo’s “sunset clause” allowed for a coalition government for the five years following a democratic election, including guarantees and concessions to all sides.

After the elections of 1994 Slovo became Minister for housing in this coalition government he proposed, serving alongside the National Party as they saw out their “sunset” until his death in 1995. His funeral was attended by Nelson Mandela and Thabo Mbeki.

In a further twist of history, by 2005 the National Party closed shop and merged with the ANC, and by default they also joined the party which still remains in alliance with the ANC as a political dependent, none other than …. The South African Communist Party. Such is the cycle of history, go figure!

Story by Peter Dickens

Joe Slovo (left) is seen in his South African Army uniform (and Signaler insignia) in the feature image with fellow South African soldiers Mike Feldman and Barney Fehler (image courtesy of Mike Feldman)

References Lazerson, Whites in the Struggle Against Apartheid. Neil Roos. Ordinary Springboks: White Servicemen and Social Justice in South Africa, 1939-1961. Wikipedia and “Not for ourselves” – a history of the South African Legion by Arthur Blake


HMS Dorsetshire and HMS Cornwall

The Cruisers HMS Dorsetshire and HMS Cornwall were attacked and sunk on the 5th April 1942 by Japanese aircraft.

The ships were spotted by a reconnaissance aircraft from the heavy cruiser Tone, and subsequently attached by over 50 Val dive bombers. In less that 8 minutes HMS Dorsetshire had been hit by 10 bombs, and sank stern first after one bomb detonated a magazine.

HMS Cornwall was hit 8 times and sank bow first 10 minutes after HMS Cornwall.

The following day the cruiser Enterprise, accompanies by two destroyers Panther and Paladin rescued 1,122 men out of a combined crew of over 1,546. Among the casualties were 39 South Africans.

These two links provide an insight into the experiences of the crew:

Lt E. A Drew, Engineering Branch, HMS Cornwall

Walter Fudge, HMS Dorsetshire

The South Africans are honoured on the Plymouth Naval Memorial.