Tributes pour in for Swakop firefighter

The well-known head of the Swakopmund fire brigade died on Monday.

18 June 2021 | Local News

ERWIN LEUSCHNER







SWAKOPMUND

The head of the Swakopmund fire and rescue service, Adri Goosen, died of a heart attack on Monday afternoon at the age of 56.

He leaves a void in the community.

Goosen began his career as a firefighter in Windhoek in 1990. After two decades of service in the capital, he took up the post of head of the Swakopmund fire brigade on 1 February 2011. Not only was he present at almost every fire at the coastal town, he also offered his help at traffic incidents or other accidents throughout the Erongo Region.

Goosen placed great emphasis on community education and offered firefighting courses free of charge.

After his death was announced, Swakopmund fire engines held a procession to the municipality with wailing sirens.

Leader of note

Messages of condolence began pouring in on social media on Monday evening, especially from other emergency services members.

“Adri was an incredibly hard-working man. His work was not a status symbol; it was his passion,” Swakopmund paramedic Brendon Scott said. He added: “He is legend. The community lay close to his heart.”

Aubrey Oosthuizen of the West Coast Safety Initiative and the private ambulance service Code Red described Goosen as an “upstanding officer and gentleman in the truest sense of the word”.

“It was an honour working with you and to be able to call you a friend,” he said. “You were a leader of note, a real role model and for most of us a hero and angel. The legacy you leave behind is profound.”

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