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Rheinmetall Denel Munition receives identities of colleagues who died in blast

RDM artillery production.The management of Rheinmetall Denel Munition (RDM) has been given the identities of those who died in the explosion at its Somerset West facilities on 3 September.

The families received official confirmation of the identities from the Forensic Pathology Service on 13 September.

In addition to the identities, the families of those who died have given RDM permission to share some personal information as a means of honouring them publicly.

Those who died are as follows:

Nico Angelo Samuels, aged 41, plant supervisor
Nico grew up in Firgrove and later moved to Macassar. He started working for RDM in 1999 as an operator and worked his way up, ultimately becoming a supervisor last year. He was an avid cricketer, playing for Macassar and RDM, and lived for soccer. His family say that he loved his colleagues dearly and was a people person. He was known for being humble, kind-hearted and having a big smile. He is survived by his mother, Angel; his wife, Lawrencia; and four children: Nazli, Ismail, Liam and Kyle; as well as a granddaughter named Naaseeka.

Stevon Robert Isaacs, aged 51, team leader
Stevon has been described by his family as an easy-going person who wasn’t fancy or fussy, but was very particular about his work. He started working at RDM in 1985 as an operator and, after working his way up, became a team leader in 2011. He used to play rugby for the Vineyards with all of his brothers, who made up most of the team. He was an avid sports fan, supporting the All Blacks in rugby and Chelsea in soccer. He also enjoyed watching horse-racing every weekend. He is survived by his wife, Maureen; his son, Justin; and his grandson Matthew.

Mxolisi Sigadla, aged 40, operator
Mxolisi was born in Idutywa where he completed his matric, before moving to Cape Town and joining RDM in 2014. He obtained a National Certificate in public management in 2011 and received a certificate of service from the City of Cape Town. His family say that he enjoyed playing soccer and listening to jazz music. He is survived by his cousins, nieces and nephews, along with his mother, three sisters and wife.

Bradley Tandy, aged 19, operator
Bradley grew up in Macassar, where he attended school and played rugby and cricket for Macassar. His family says he enjoyed watching all types of sport on television and was seldom seen without his phone in his hands. They add that he was a very good son who never gave his family any problems, with no words being able to describe his worth. He is survived by his two sisters, Roslyn and Camenitha; and three brothers, Brendon, Mario and Clayton; as well as his mother, Susan and father, Mario.

Jamie Lesley Haydricks, aged 24, operator
Jamie grew up in and lived in Macassar. He enjoyed dancing, cycling, and playing rugby and soccer. His family says he loved making jokes and kept people laughing. He was also a DJ and a lover of music. He is survived by his mother, Gwendolene; his father, Wayne; his sister, Jade; his girlfriend Lerieka; and his two children Tiano and Jamie-Leigh.

Jason Hartzenberg, aged 22, operator
Jason was born in Macassar and grew up in Strand. He liked to dance and also taught dancing to neighbourhood children. He played rugby at school and fixed bicycles in his spare time. He was also a barber to all and dabbled in pigeon farming. His family says that no one could ever be angry at him because he was so loveable. He was also known for being precise and neat. He is survived by his mother, Christine; father, Jan Uithaler; girlfriend, Tamsyn; and his daughter Jaelynn whom he loved dearly.

Triston Lance Davids, aged 22, operator
Triston grew up in Macassar and after school qualified as a basic ambulance assistant in pursuit of his dream of becoming a paramedic. He also intended to join the South African army. He practised karate and earned his brown belt at a young age. His family says he was obsessed with the gym and even started his own home gym. He was known for his beautiful voice and loved soulful music. He was also very spiritual, being a Secretary of the Christian Youth Ministries of the United Reformed Church. He is survived by his mother, Lizle; father, Malcolm; younger brother Luciane; and younger sister, Miché.

Thandolwethu Mankayi, aged 27, operator
Thandolwethu, or Victor as he was known, grew up in Mfuleni where he went to school. He worked as a driver before joining the RDM team. He enjoyed skating, playing soccer and listening to music. He was also a DJ. He is survived by his grandmother, uncles, aunts, cousins, his mother, two sisters, one brother and a daughter who is six years old.

“We feel it is important to honour our colleagues by sharing some personal information about them. We will also be hosting a memorial service at our RDM premises in Somerset West on Thursday 20 September at 14:00,” said RDM CEO Norbert Schulze.


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