Reunion Shipmate Messages

Shipmate Messages

Collated by Dave Lopes


Vernon Saayman

Evening – hope you all have a good time tonight. Thanks for the memories you have all made me remember for life. Sorry couldn’t be with you all. Hope you all keep well and love to your families. Keep strong and walk with pride.


Capt (Ret) Frank Charles van Rooyen (From Buenos Aires)

Where spouse Sonica [Captain (SAN)] is South Africa’s defence attaché to Argentina, Chile and Uruguay … I realised suddenly earlier this year that I was one of the lucky ones to have served on the last two SA Navy Type 12s up to their very last day of operational service (PKR as SLt – baby Nav – 18 Feb 82, PPT as Lt – Comms & EW officer – Aug 85). Best of times, super salty sea dog ships’ companies, wonderful adventures. Have fun this evening, share yarns, and let it go on until the Morning Watch! Will hopefully be there for next one. Shipmate greetings to all and your families. BZ to the organisers!


Marius Botha

Ek wil dit kategories stel dat die Vloot my geleer het van dissipliene en kammeraadskap, wat ek tot vandag toepas in my lewe. Dankie vir al die offisiere, Adj en senior manskappe; as dit nie vir julle was nie, sou my lewe seker anders uitgedraai het. Ek wil hulde bring aan die manskappe wat ons verlaat het na die ewige rus. Hulle moet nooit ooit vergeet word nie, want hulle het hul deel bygedra om die Vloot te help met die opbou proses. Weereens dankie  Ek tjank hier in PE omdat ek dit nie kan bywoon nie. Ek kan my net indink van al die stories wat gaan vertel word. Wou so bitter graag vir jou David, Harry, Tommo, Don, David Petrowski, Mike en die ouens wou ontmoet, daar is seker nog name, kan nie almal onthou nie. Asb sit die foto’s op, met die name, sal dit terdee geniet.


David Blyth

As one of those who cannot attend, I thank all those that arranged this function and those attending for representing us all in that which we did as members of the ships’ companies of the President class frigates. We share some history and I am sure are all proud to have served and shared. I trust that all the attendees will enjoy the evening and return home safely. Let us keep in mind those of us that have crossed the bar, particularly with the PK.


Sebastian De Beer

My father, Koos De Beer, will regretfully be unable to attend the function but sends his best regards to all his old shipmates that will be there. Next time please hold it in Freemantle so that he can attend!


Ken Welthagen

Hope all the presidents men have a fantastic evening, no matter where we are the uniform stays on and memories are forever.


GI Roodman

Regret unable to attend the reunion, but wish everybody the best and to have a toast on me.

Peter Burger

Unable to attend. living in Gauteng. Served PS. 74-76. RO. You mates that can attend, have a good one.


Mike van Zyl

Wish I could be there, have a good time and regards to all.


Paul Le Bas (From Western Australia)

All the best to the ‘Presidents Men’ upon your intended Reunion, next month. Even if only a few can through circumstances “make it”. You all who are there will make your time a good time. Full of respect for those “gone” those who may not be able to be with you. For the 1st time in 40 years, last year I went to Melbourne and caught up with a few. It mattered not how few we were, it was the memories of a time long gone. I wish All the “Presidents Men” all the very best! God bless you all.


David Petrowski

I’m sorry I can’t make it, but extend my best wishes to all that can be there. Enjoy the banter, drink with a mate, and think of those that can’t be there, as they are no longer with us. Cheers guys, have a moerse party.


Johan Swiegers

To all remembering Swiegie – have a great time guys!


Michael Franks

Unfortunately I will be stuck in Johannesburg due to business commitments; however I most certainly will be with you in spirit. I wish you all a fantastic evening together, and may this group continue long past it’s “sell by” date. It was a privilege to have served with some of you on the greatest ships afloat at the time. I salute you all. As “Beetle” Horn would say, I will have a couple of “wets” in your honour. God bless you all and keep you safe.


Don Slabber

Greetings from Pompey in the UK. Commissioned PP in 1964. Will be thinking of you guys in Simonstown. Enjoy. Slabbie


Adm Errol Massey-Hicks

Sorry to miss it. Have a wonderful Reunion


Greg Stringfellow

Wish all my shipmates a great time at the Reunion.  Sorry I can’t make it.  I am living back home in England.


Percy Oliver

Joined the PSN on commissioning in the UK under Capt John Fairbairn.  What I missed in civilian life was the camaraderie that we had in the service but I left the service a better person and had no regrets in joining up.  I am sorry I can’t be there with all the members of 10FS but I wish you all a great evening, a few good beers and to appreciate all the memories. God Bless you all.