Regiment Bloemspruit is an infantry regiment of the South African Army. As a reserve unit, it has a status roughly equivalent to that of a British Territorial Army or United States Army National Guard unit.
History[edit | edit source]
Regiment Bloemspruit with its HQ in Bloemfontein, was established on 1 January 1964 as the first Citizen Force Infantry Regiment in the then Orange Free State. The total strength of the Regiment at that stage was 15 members. The then Minister of Defence and later State President, the late Mr J.J. (Jim) Fouché, was actively involved in the establishment of the Regiment.
The Regimental Colour was presented to the Regiment by the then State President Mr J.J. Fouché On 29 January 1981 the Freedom of the City was conferred on the Regiment by the City Council of Bloemfontein, which the unit exercised for the first time on 6 March 1982.
On 1 April 1997 Regiment Louw Wepener (Bethlehem), Regiment De Wet (Kroonstad) and Regiment Dan Pienaar (Bloemfontein) were absorbed into Regiment Bloemspruit.
The first Officer commanding of the Regiment was Cmdt J.M. Wentzel (1964–1966) followed by Cmdt J.A. van Huysteen (1966–1968), Cmdt I.M.H. Pieterse (1968–1976), Cmdt C.J. Horn (1976–1982) and Cmdt H. McKay (1982–1991). The present OC (since 1991) is Lt Col E. Horn. The first Regimental Sergeant Major (RSM) was WO1 A. Horn (1964–1969), followed by WO1 J.F. Fivaz (1969–1984) and WO1 K.J.H. van Zyl (1984-1996). The present RSM (since 1996) is Master Warrant Officer (MWO) C.J. De Bruyn.
The regiment served in the South African Border War in the 1970s and 1980s.
Today the Regiment is still active and well with a total strength of more than 500 members. The motto of the Regiment is "Wakker en Trou", meaning Alert and Loyal. A traditional toast, only to be introduced at very special occasions and a traditional way of greeting (only between members of the Regiment) were introduced in 1994.
During 2006 RBS was deployed internally at Madimbo in the Limpopo Province as well as in the Eastern Cape with the swine fever outbreak.
During April to June 2006 and January and February 2008 RBS participated in ATR/ACR (Army Territorial Reserve to Army Conventional Reserve) Conversion Training with Kimberly Regiment. The Regiment presented the penultimate ATR/ACR Conversion Course during January/February 2009.
Bravo Company (B-Coy)under command of Maj Dawid Vos, was attached to 121 SA Infantry Battalion and successfully deployed on a Peace Keeping Mission to the Darfur Region of Sudan from October 2009 to May 2010.
Through Continuation and Formal Training the Regiment continually strives to provide an effective, professional combat ready force to the SA Army Infantry Formation.
With the allocation of Military Skills Development System (MSDS) members with a five-year Reserve Force obligation, the regiment will be continually rejuvenated.
Regimental Symbols[edit | edit source]
Battle honours[edit | edit source]
References[edit | edit source]
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