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Veterans from South Africa to remember sacrifices at Birnam

Published Article May 9, 2019 in the Beaudesert Times

Veterans from South Africa to remember sacrifices at Birnam

A REMEMBRANCE Day service for South African veterans conscripted into the military is being hosted at Beaudesert.

Ex-serviceman Shaun Winson said the event had been hosted for the past three years to pay tribute to the sacrifices made by those who served.

Mr Winson, who chairs the South African Military Veterans' Organisation Australasia's Queensland branch, said military service became compulsory for all white South African men in 1967.

More than 400,000 South African men completed a tour of duty, he said.

"It is reasonable to say that the experience that was dealt to us left a profound mark in some form or other on us.

" ... At that time, when we had completed our two years, we were pushed out the gates and returned to civilian street and we never spoke about (it)."

"It is now that we can get together and speak to each other about those days."

Mr Winson said relatives of South African men killed during combat had written to SAMVOA thanking them for Remembrance Day events.

He said this year's service on Saturday, May 11 would also help commemorate the sacrifices made by the families of those who served.

"They were separated from their loved one, whom they knew was going into danger," he said.

"In many instances, given the covert nature of much that happened, families were not even certain where their loved one was and imagined the worst."

To contact SAMVOA's Queensland branch, email

SAMVOA Remembrance Day

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