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But the constant fighting and the long periods that the 32 Battalion troops were deployed placed immense pressure on the men. He was tired of being deployed for months on end, weary of carrying heavy packs. He was looking for a way out. In he began investigating the idea of driving rather than foot-slogging into battle.

Gomies went to see him about a transfer to the police.

Angolan Civil War

Kilino personally completed the forms for him and in his transfer to Koevoet took place. No longer would he be six months away from home, no longer would he lug forty-kilogram packs on his back. For the next six months he was re-trained —again. When they were eventually deployed Gomies became the gunner for Car 3 and for the remainder of the war he was a mounted machine-gunner.

Occasionally though, he would join the rest of the men on foot, but no more serious walking and no more heavy backpacks and mortars to carry.

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At the big fight at Kahenge he was present when WO Bennie was killed action. In the bloodiest action of the twenty-three-year-long conflict Gomes was there, behind his machine gun on his Casspir. He worked out ofMoordkop near Rustenburg, in Pongola, KwaZulu-Natal, on the Swaziland border and any other place where they were needed. Gomies left the police and went into the private security industry.


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For five more years he protected its citizens. In his three decades of active service caught up with him. His health was such that he could no longer work. He returned to Vingerkraalnear Warmbathswhere today he lives in a shack, without any police or army pension. Like so many others. But he remains a proud man, a man who fought the good fight and never lost a battle. Leon Bezuidenhout. February No comments:.


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