We will probably never know what students in the OP class of 1969 did in the summer of ‘69 but the group that qualified at the end of that year recently held their 50th reunion near Pretoria at the Roodevalley Hotel in Kameeldrift East.
The 22 friends gathered at the hotel on a Monday night resulting in a very jovial encounter. The next day the group and their spouses enjoyed an insightful visit to the Veterinary Faculty’s Onderstepoort Campus which included the student residences, as well as a trip to the Onderstepoort Veterinary Institute (OVI) to see the old academic facilities, historical monuments and the SAVA History Museum. This proved to be a special trip down memory lane and allowed them the opportunity to see how much veterinary education has developed and facilities have improved over the years.
On Wednesday, individuals went on a variety of different tours but came together for the final evening’s dinner. At each dinner individuals were requested to share their memories of lecturers and events during their student days and the impact these had on their careers. These proved both interesting and amusing. They eventually said their goodbyes on the Thursday and left another memorable 50th reunion.
The group has to date held 7 reunions at five-year intervals from as far back as 1989. Their spouses have attended virtually every reunion which has generated a special atmosphere of close camaraderie. From the way the group is interacting it is clear that they have become part of a closely-knit group of friends and were always made to feel special and welcome.
The organising committee for the event was Austin Markus, Gareth Bath, Peet Delport and Glynn Catton. The visit was facilitated by staff members in the Office of the Deputy Dean: Teaching and Learning. The Faculty kindly sponsored the lunch at the OP cafeteria.
Dr Kit Button (below) of the OP Class of 1969 was also elected as Theiler student in 1969.