Message to Readers
Tuesday 28 November, 2017 marks the thirtieth anniversary of the loss of South African Airways flight 295, also known as the Helderberg.
First of all, I would like to say to the families that, once again, you have my heart felt sympathies and condolences, because no matter how much time has passed, the pain that is felt at the loss of a family member never goes away. I wish all of you, all of the very best.
But it is that time of the year again when people remember the shock, the pain, the anger and frustration at not getting the answers they desperately sought, and that doesn't just mean the families. And it is that time of the year again when the old theories start coming back to the surface and when new ones arise. And this year is no different.
Just yesterday I was asked if I had heard of the new theory on what had happened to the Helderberg. When this happens, I wait with bated breath for what comes next. What shocker has someone come up with this time? This will be the second theory for the year.
Earlier in the year it was mentioned that it was possible that the fire could have been started by one of the crew members who had been smoking in the main deck cargo compartment and negligently discarded their cigarette end. This is not the first time this hot little theory has been brought up and then doused. Much has been said about these fires but it is doubtful that it was started by a cigarette butt.
The latest theory to join the ranks is somewhat more astonishing. There are, apparently, satellite photographs, "somewhere" showing that the Helderberg was shot down by a missile. Of course, these photographs have not been produced as yet, but this "new evidence" flies in the face of the actual evidence from the investigation which found no evidence whatsoever of an explosion.
However, you will believe what you will believe, but I won't hold my breath while I wait for the next scintillating bit of evidence to appear.
It seems that Europe works on what we like to call Africa time. Things will happen when they happen. This seems to be the case with the review that is supposed to be coming from the Austrian aviation magazine, Austrian Wings. As I have said, when I get it so will you.
In the meantime...keep reading!
Below Left to right: Reverend Mark Des Fountain who wrote the foreword to this book, Mrs Auriette Perfect, widow to the Senior Technical Investigator for South African Airways on this tragedy, Mr Trevor Perfect, to whom this book is dedicated and myself, the author.