IN MEMORIAM 12 August 1978 – Alpha Comp 1977/78 by Col Graham du Toit

Three members from 1 Parachute Battalion were killed in action or died of their wounds on 12 August 1978 after running into an enemy ambush in Southern Angola while in hot pursuit of a SWAPO/PLAN insurgent group of approximately 70 men strong. 

The patrol was moving at pace when they approached a dip in the terrain where the insurgents were waiting. Lance Corporal Pierre Du Bois was hit in the neck by enemy gunfire and died instantly.  Cornelis van der Nest was also fatally shot and killed by enemy gunfire in the initial exchange.  Johannes Greyling, the Radio Operator was critically wounded by a piece of mortar bomb shrapnel when an enemy mortar bomb landed and exploded just in front of him while he was taking the radio off his back.  He was evacuated by Casevac helicopter to the Medical Trauma Facility at Grootfontein where he unfortunately succumbed to his wounds a few hours after being admitted.  The three casualties were:

75398263BG Lance Corporal Pierre Johannes Du Bois. He was 19.
74440124BG Rifleman Johannes Barend Greyling. He was 20.
74445370BG Rifleman Cornelis Frederik van der Nest. He was 19.

Their names and sacrifice has not been forgotten.

Ex Alto Vincimus.