A farewell tribute to General Gotze Légion d’Honneur

I had written about him on Lest We Forget in 2012.

Someone else wrote this in 2018.


This is one of the post I had written about him.




About the creator of the Website…

I am an engineer and worked for 14 years in the SA arms industry mainly designing rocket motors and aircraft parts. For the past 17 years I have been in the private sector working in the flour milling industry.

My interest in WW2 SAAF history was inspired by conversations I had with WW2 pilots back in 2010. Since then I have traced and visited many ex-WW2 SAAF pilots and aircrew, recording their stories. This fascinates me and it always strike me how incredible humble these people are regarding their war service. Through the internet I have been contacted by many family members who’s ancestors served and want information on their whereabouts. It thrills me if I discover something that is of importance to these families.

In my opinion the history of our South African forces’ participation in the second world war has been badly neglected over the years since 1948, when a new government came to power that opposed SA’s involvement to the war. Unlike other Allied Commonwealth countries where their WW2 military achievements and sacrifice are cherished and honoured through school syllabus, media and commemoration events, this is not happening in South Africa with the same level of importance. Our war hero’s with the likes of Sailor Malan, Thomas Pattle, etc., never featured in any school history books and remained unknown to the public. Same with the 330 000+ South African volunteers that served in the war. They never got their deserved and rightful place of honour in our rich South African history.

The situation has further deteriorated when a new government came to power in 1994. This government understandably has absolute no interest in this part of the South African history and now even the three SAAF museums are under threat due to budget and resource allocation cuts.

My goal with the WW2 SAAF heritage work is to promote this aspect of our history and make it accessible to public via the internet as token of homage, appreciation and respect to our WW2 servicemen. I try to locate and video interview veterans and copy their precious photograph albums and log books. I also strive to get hold of family members of those who served in an effort to copy historical memorabilia and make it available on the internet for the public in appreciation for what they did.

For me as an enthusiast I do all of this as a hobby with no commercial intent.

Tinus le Roux
January 2014

What If: The Kamikaze and the Invasion of Kyushu? III

What if… Part Three

Weapons and Warfare

Typhoon Louise Strikes

“Was it Louise,” asked one, “was it the October typhoon that
killed the plan?”

“Ultimately, yes. It had been a hard sell to begin with. The
shipping crisis that had come to a head at Leyte had never been completely
solved and there was a legitimate concern that if too much was lost during
Bugeye we would be hard-pressed to fulfill our needs during Majestic. We
received the go-ahead for Bugeye only after certain numbers of assault ships of
every category had been pulled from the operation. Vessels like the
thirty-eight to be used as blockships for Coronet’s ‘Mulberry’ harbor would
have been completely satisfactory for the feint, and yet though many were
virtual derelicts, we were nevertheless required to preserve them for Tokyo. I
need not remind you that construction of the artificial harbor carried a priority
second only to development of the atom bomb, and…

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What If: The Kamikaze and the Invasion of Kyushu? II

What if… Part Two

Weapons and Warfare

The officer students were more willing to respectfully interject
themselves into Commodore Bates’s comments than they were to interrupt Turner,
and a former destroyer captain immediately spoke up.

“That’s theoretically true, sir, but anyone who experienced the
Philippines and Okinawa, or the raids on Japan, knows that in most instances
you can’t actually do that and live to tell about it. The suiciders had
apparently been told that, since they didn’t need the broad targets normally
required for aiming bombs, the best results in their type of mission would come
from bow—or stern—on attacks that allowed them to be targeted by the least
amount of defensive fire. I’d seen new skippers follow COMINCH advice on this
matter and the only thing that happened was a sort of Divine Wind ‘crossing the
T,’ made much easier by less radical destroyer maneuvers.”

A former executive officer chimed in. “I’ve been told that

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What If: The Kamikaze and the Invasion of Kyushu? I

What if… Part One

Weapons and Warfare

The lecture on logistic considerations for the recent
invasion of Kyushu was going well. Nearly 160 students, faculty, and guests
filled Pringle Auditorium at the Naval War College on this blustery Tuesday
evening in November 1946 to hear Adm. Richmond Kelly Turner. A 1908 graduate of
the U.S. Naval Academy, Turner had commanded the Pacific Fleet Amphibious Force
of more than 2,700 ships and large landing craft during the invasion. The 101
students in the class of 1947 were veterans of the largest war in history, and
the transfer of nearly all of the Atlantic Fleet’s assets to the Far East after
Normandy had insured the participation of every navy and marine officer at the
college in either the final, mammoth operation at Kyushu or the even more
massive operation planned for later in the Tokyo area. Likewise, all but two of
the dozen army, air force, and coast guard…

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Flight Lieutenant Frank Sorensen’s biography

About Flight Lieutenant Frank Sorensen

Flight Lieutenant Frank Sorensen


Flight Lieutenant Frank Sorensen’s biography was written by his daughter Vicki Sorensen after her had father passed away.

She is sharing what she wrote.

My father, Frank Sorensen, immigrated to Canada from Roskilde, Denmark with his family in August 1939. He volunteered in the Royal Canadian Air Force in March 1941 and trained to become a Spitfire fighter pilot. He was shot down while serving with RAF 232 Squadron, over Tunisia, in North Africa on April 11, 1943 and became a prisoner of war at Stalag Luft III. He was an active participant in the tunnel digging operations that was later known as The Great Escape.

After my father’s death February 5th, 2010, when he was 87, I came into possession of letters written by him to his parents during the war that they had saved and given back to him. Along with the letters were numerous photos and…

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Nisei – part 3 Nisei ROTC in Hawaii

Nisei – part 3 Nisei ROTC in Hawaii

Pacific Paratrooper

HI Territorial Guard, UH, 1942

On 7 December 1941, the UH ROTC Regiment over 600 strong was called out over the radio to report to duty. We reported to the ROTC Armory, which is that little wooden building now standing at the end of Sinclair Library parking lot. We were greeted by the sight of Sgt. Ward and Sgt. Hogan feverishly inserting firing pins into Springfield .03 rifles. I reported to my unit, Company “B”, 1st Battalion, commanded by Captain Nolle Smith. We were issued a clip of 5 bullets with our rifles.

It was reported that Japanese paratroopers had landed on St. Louis Heights. Our first order was to deploy down across Manoa Stream where Kanewai Park now stands and to prevent the enemy from advancing into the city. We were crouched down among the koa bushes for long hours in the hot sun, waiting for the enemy which…

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Nisei – part 2

Nisei – part 2

Pacific Paratrooper

306th HQ Intelligence Detachment, XXIV Corps, Leyte, Philippines, November 1, 1944. Front row, l to r: George Shimotori, Saburo Okamura, Thomas Sasaki, Francis Yamamoto Herbert Nishihara, Warren Tsuneishi. Back row, l to r: Hiroshi Itow, Joe Nishihara, Lt. Richard Kleeman, TSgt George Takabayashi, Lloyd Shimasato.
(Signal Corps photo)

When the first graduates were sent to the Pacific and landed in Australia, they were part of the Americal troops. Many were sent to help with the fighting on Iwo Jima, which MacArthur felt was taking far too long to complete. Some stayed and worked with the Australian troops and others went to British or Canadian units. (Canada also had their own S-20 Japanese Language School in Vancouver, British Columbia to train interpreters.) Only the U.S. Navy rejected the linguists. Admiral Halsey did in fact understand their importance and requested some MIS’ers for his fleet, but as a whole, Nimitz and the…

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