General – Jacobus Daniel(Koot) Opperman

General Jacobus Daniel(Koot) Opperman
He was born in 1861.A most competent soldier, he was mainly responsible for the British defeat at Scheepersnek and the capture of two guns at Bloedrivierpoort in September 1901 as well as for the destruction of Bethune’s Mounted Infantry.  He was wounded twice before  being killed in action at the battle of Bakenlaagte. On 4 January 1902 he was shot in the forehead as he urged his men forward. His body lay on the  field and his adjutant, M W Coetzer, and Willem Collins battled to load the 120kg body onto a horse. By then, the British columns were arriving  at the top of the ridge and the Boers now became subjected to artillery fire. In spite of all their efforts, they failed to recover the general’s body  which was left on the field. (Today it lies buried in Vryheid cemetery)

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