SUMMARISED TRANSLATION OF ARTICLES IN EDITION 104/2010 OF THE "ONS HAANTJIE" NEWSLETTER OF THE HENNING FAMILY LEAGUE
1. Tragiese helikopterongeluk/Tragic Helicopter Accident. Two BK117 helicopters of the SA Police Service in Pretoria with members of the National Intervention Unit hasted to Witbank on 23 June 2010 when a call came through that robbers were holding a woman hostage during a robbery at the Shoprite Centre in Witbank. b1.c8.d6.e5.f5.g1.h1. Sgt Jacobus Henning (28) *9-4-1982, plus four other members of the National Intervention Unit, was in one of the helicopters with the pilot and a crew member.
7 km from Witbank this helicopter crashed. Eye witnesses said they saw the helicopter exploding in the air, before it crashed. All seven members died instantly. The other helicopter landed safely. All the robbers were arrested. An investigation team, consisting of members of the SA Police Service, SA Air Force and Eurocopter, the manufacturer of the helicopter, will investigate the cause of the accident.
Jacobus was married to Marlize (born De Witt). Their first child, a baby boy, Johann was born seven weeks before the accident on 7 June 2010. Marlize is a Warrant Officer in the Police Service. After the accident, she tried to give moral support to the relatives of the other victims, in spite of her own sorrow.
2. Konsentrasiekamp Monument/Concentration Camp Monument. The Management Committee decided to contribute towards the War Museum's planned Concentration Camp monument at the Women's Monument in Bloemfontein. This memorial wil be erected to replace the Bethulie Concentration Camp Memorial, which became dilapidated due to the fact that the new South African Government does not fullfill it's obligation to maintain Afrikaner monuments and memorials.
We support this effort due to the large number of Henning women and children who died in the concentration camps, and in particular the Bethulie camp. We invited our members to support our effort. Only four members reacted, but an amount of R1 300.00 could be added to the R2 000.00 the Family League made available.
In a letter of thanks the War Museum indicated that our donation would be used to make a porcelain cast of the angel statue which was stolen from the Bethulie memorial (fortunately recovered later). Recognition will be given to the contribution of the Family League on the memorial stone. Names can be seen in the Afrikaans newsletter.
The memorial tablet refer i.a. to
1. Genl Christiaan de Wet's referal to the Bethulie Camp as the "Hell Camp";
2. Rev HJC Becker wrote in his diary that he cried every day before he could preach at the 12 funerals he had to convey every morning and 7 in the afternoons. This broke the heart of the stongest;
3. At Bethulie the women and children covered the graves of their loved ones with stones they broke with their hands from the banks of a nearby brook;
4. The original angel statue was erected in 1924 by the "Helpmekaarbeweging" (help each other movement) as part of the Bethulie Memorial.
5. To survive the ordeal in the Bethulie camp, the women and children used Matthew 10:29 as motto: "Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of your Father". Survivors of this "hell camp" later persuaded the South African Government to use the motto of two sparrows on the smallest coin - the quarter penny.
On 22 and 23 September 2010 the War Museum held a conference in Bloemfontein on the preservation and maintenance of Concentration Camp sites and graveyards. The new Concentration Camp Memorial was also unveiled on 22 September. Unfortunately our Family League Chairman, Gideon Henning and League Secretary, Olivier Henning could not attend due to other commitments and illness. After the stroke Olivier had, it is very difficult for him to travel long distances. Jan Andries Henning of Bloemfontein represented the family league at the conference and the unveiling of the memorial.
3. Sterftes/Deaths. In the previous newsletter we reported on the death of Eric Michael Naude, spouse of b7.c2.d4.e6.f1.g1. Ellen Elizabeth Henning on 16 April 2010. Soon after the newsletter went out, we heard that Ellen herself died on 23 July 2010 at the age of 80 years and nine months - only three months after her husband.
4. Comrades Marathon 2010. Mary-Ann Henning (born Nel) *28-5-1963, wife of b7.c8.d8.e1.f2.g2. Stanley Henning *20-10-1961 participated for many years in long distance road- and track races. Several hundreds of medals have been awarded to her already. Last year she tackled the Comrades Marathon but due to an injury, she could not complete the race. This year she and her brother ran together and completed the race in the laid down time.
5. Vierdaagse Mars, Nijmegen, Nederland / Four Days March, Nijmegen. Rev Bjarne Fowels (70) is a member of the Family League due to the fact that his great-grand mother was b7.c8.d1. Martha Johanna Elizabeth Henning (married Zurich) *26-8-1857. His grandmother (daughter of Martha) married a Norwegean ships-captain and moved with him to Norway. Bjarne served for many years as a chaplain in the Norwegean Defence Force. He, however, is very proud of his Henning ancestors and South African heritage.
Bjarne already participated several times in the Four Days March. This year, at the age of 70 years, he participated with his son Brynjar, a medical doctor.
The Nijmegen international long distance march was held this year for the 94th time over the period 20 - 23 July 2010. Participants choose between dayly distances of ± 30, 40 and 50 km's, which gives distances of 126, 161 or 199 km over the four days. There were 48 435 participants (men, women, military, civilian) from 66 countries. The youngest participant - 11, the oldest 88 and there was a participant who walked for the 63rd time.
People participate in an atmosphere of friendship, cheerfulness, with march music, variegated flags, with thousands of spectators on the whole route. Military participants must carry a rucksack and waterbottel and can march in a platoon or individual. Several participants contracted blisters or other injuries, but life long frienships are formed.
At the end of the fourth day participants march through the triumphal arch, like the Romans, where they receive arms full of gladiola flowers. Gladiolas (or sword lily flowers) symbolizes the gladiators from the Roman times.
6. Henning Baba/Henning Baby. b9.c1.d2.e3.f3.g2.h4. Izak Jacobus Henning *16-7-1970 informed us that he and his wife, Corné (born La Grange) had a baby boy, named Armand on 9 April 2010.
7. Geldsake/Money Matters. Thank you to everybody who have donated money this year. Unfortunately there are more than 30 ordinary members who have made no donation and this year our expenses were considerably higher than usual. Life Long members, Honorary members and ordinary members who would still like to make a donation this year can deposit their contribution directly into our banking account - ABSA Bank Villiersdorp (branch 334-612), Account name - Henning Familiebond; Account number - 2890 610 423. Use your member number (or initial and surname) as reference.
We are totally dependent on the contributions our members make from time to time to survive. Like our rooster on the photograph we had a difficult year, but we survived and won all our battles. We are still walking straight up!