|Rudolph Christiaan Hiemstra
10 March 1912|
Lydenburg, South Africa
|Died||26 July 2007
Pretoria, South Africa
|Service/branch||South African Air Force|
|Years of service||1931 - 1972|
|Unit||2 Squadron SAAF|
Gertruida Hiemstra (wife)Judge Victor Hiemstra (Brother)
Hiemstra joined the South African Air Force in 1931. He did not serve in World War II because of his political opposition to South Africa's involvement in the war and was transferred to the civil service, from which he returned to the defence force when the National Party (South Africa) government came to power in 1948.
He served as Adjutant General, interrupted by his attendance at the Imperial Defence College, as Inspector General from 1959 to 1960, as Deputy Commandant General from 1961 to 1965, and as Commandant General, i.e. chief of the SA Defence Force, from 1965 to 1972.
In 1966 the Commandant General was appointed Secretary for Defence over and above his appointment as head of the SA Defence Force.
During May, 1967, the dual title of Commandant General and Secretary for Defence was dispensed with by the elimination of the title "Secretary for Defence". The Commandant General, as permanent head of the Department of Defence as well as of the South African Defence Force filled the post of Commandant General, SADF, which post embraced the functions signified by the former dual title. At the same time the rank of Commandant General, instituted in September, 1956, was changed to that of General.
Awards and Decorations
- Star of South Africa (SSA)
- Southern Cross Medal (SM)
He is survived by six children, sixteen grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
- Who's Who of Souther Africa 1959. Ken Donaldson (Pty) Ltd. 1959. p. 290.
- Britz, Elretha (27 July 2007). "Oud-weermaghoof RC Hiemstra sterf". Beeld (in Afrikaans). Media24. Retrieved 29 March 2009.
- STRATFORD, DO (December 1968). "The Office of Secretary for Defence". Military History Journal. Johannesburg: South African Military History Society. 1 (3). SA. Retrieved 1 December 2008.
|Commandant General of the SADF
1965 – 1972
|Inspector General SADF
1959 – 1960
|Adjutant General SADF
1953 – 1959