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Memorable People

The people in this page all carry Greeff genes. They are typical of the clan. Perhaps they are more successful, more well known, luckier, harder working, better educated, more eccentric, richer, more famous, whatever, but above all, they are typical of the Greeff clan.
Please send photos of these people and further information about them to GoodGreeff@Greeff.info.

1. Joshua Greeff
2. Rachelle Greeff
3. Caspar Greeff ( the Dentist)
4. Jack Greeff
5. Werner Greeff
6. Michael Greeff
7. Prof Jaco M Greeff
8. Professor Karl Richard Greeff
9. Jan Smuts
10. Marijke Greeff
11. Johan Greeff (MP, Speaker)
12. Phillipus & Martha Greeff
13. Melissa Greeff
14. Prof AP (Awie) Greeff
15. Annie Greeff
16. Caspar Greeff (BA LLB)
17. Prof Caspar Greeff
18. Francois Greef - Cricket
19. Francois Greeff - Author

20. Hendrik Adriaan Greeff (1828 - 1884)
21. Stephanus Carel Greeff

22. Nonnie Greeff
23. Louie Greeff
24 Marguerite Blanch Crabbe Greeff
25. Arnold Greeff
26. Dr Louis Greeff
27. Karen Zoid
28. Ockert Greeff
29. Dr Mynderd Jacobus Greeff
30. Karen Greeff
31. Johannes Christoffel Greeff


1. Joshua Greeff

(Source: http://www.news24.com/News24/South_Africa/News/0,6119,2-7-1442_1816173,00.html)

New twist in Hlophe saga
13/10/2005 07:45  - (SA)  

Carien du Plessis and Philip de Bruin, Beeld

Cape Town - In the latest twist in the allegations of racism against Cape judge president John Hlophe, the Cape Bar filed a complaint against the judge on Wednesday.

In a sworn statement, Advocate Dirk Uijs, SC, repeated the allegation that Hlophe called a junior lawyer, Joshua Greeff, "a piece of white shit" who "does not deserve the walk the corridors of the higher court", and said that Greeff should return to Holland.

The complaint was referred to Chief Justice Pius Langa..... etc


2. Rachelle Greeff

Picture Credit: http://www.boekwurm.co.za/blad_skryf_fghij/greeff_rachelle.html

Rachelle Nelia Greeff was born at Cape Town in 1957. She is an accomplished and prolific professional writer who has won several awards. The three links on this page take one to pages that fully describe this interesting woman.


3. Caspar Greeff  (the dentist)

"Dr Caspar Greeff, a dentist in Kempton Park, got a couple of guys to knock off his wife Estelle after he had taken out hefty insurance policies on her life. He then called in Slang van Zyl, famous sleuth, to solve the murder. Slang found the finger of suspicion pointed to Greeff himself."



Another article, from:

 September 13 2000 at 08:03PM

A man on Wednesday told the Pretoria High Court that prominent Kempton Park dentist Dr Casper Greeff blackmailed him and threatened to cut off his penis after catching him naked with his wife.

The middle-aged man, who may not be identified in terms of an order granted by Judge Johan Els, said he had an affair with Estelle Greeff for seven years before being caught with his pants down in her bedroom by her husband.

Dr Greeff, 52, and a Kempton Park gardener, Christopher Njeje, have both pleaded not guilty to charges of murdering, kidnapping and robbing Mrs Greeff in November last year.

Mr X, as the witness was known, testified that he always met Mrs Greeff at a flat in Pretoria, but visited her at her home in Kempton Park in February 1995 at her request.

She undressed him, but remained dressed in a nightdress and invited him to "take her to Sun City".

Greeff then jumped out of the cupboard armed with a revolver and a camera. Mr X saw a flash going off. He also saw a tape recorder in the bedroom.

He said Greeff assaulted him, accused him and threatened him. He talked of money and initially wanted R1 million, but later amended his claim to R100 000 in used cash notes.

Greeff threatened to expose him if he failed to pay and he accepted that he would have to buy himself out of the situation.

At one stage Greeff ordered his wife to get a knife from the kitchen, threatening to cut off her lover's penis.

Mr X concluded that the couple had trapped him.

He said he paid the money in two instalments of R50 000 each to Greeff at a pre-arranged place and time. Before he could pay the second instalment, Mrs Greeff phoned him in his car and asked him to help her get rid of her husband.

Greeff later handed a tape recording of this conversation to Mr X.

Counsel for Greeff, Pierre Roux, said his client would testify that his wife had not played a passive role in the whole debacle. She at one stage told Greeff she still loved him and had initiated the incident "to prove her love to him".

Mrs Greeff used half of the blackmail money to pay off her debts for her shop, which she named after Mr X. The rest was invested in her name.

Private detective Slang van Zyl, who was employed by Greeff to find his wife after her disappearance, testified that he became suspicious about Greeff's lack of emotion. He also failed to mention the name of his regular handyman and painter, Elliot Masango.

He said during their first conversation, Greeff told him that he had problems with his marriage, like many other couples. But then added that he frequently in the past wished that his wife would be kidnapped, hijacked and killed, but without him being involved.

A colleague of Van Zyl traced Masango and arranged with the Brixton murder and robbery unit to help him search Masango's house and to question him.

Masango and Njeje, who were arrested six days after Mrs Greeff's disappearance, eventually led the police and Van Zyl to the place where her body was found. Police then arrested Greeff.

Inspector Stephanus van der Watt of the murder and robbery Unit said he had also found Greeff's reactions strange.

After his arrest and on hearing that his wife's body had been found, Greeff only asked what she looked like, but never asked any questions about the circumstances of her death.

Van der Watt said Greeff insisted that he wanted to finish praying and reading his bible when police arrived at his house to arrest him.

He said Njeje had confessed to him that he had slit Mrs Greeff's throat and also told him that he did so "on behalf of the doctor".

The trial continues. - Sapa

According to other newspaper articles, the murderers entered Estelle's home, overpowered her, tied her hands and feet and then strangled her to death. They put the body in the boot of her car and drove into the bush at Cullinan to dump the body. When they opened the boot their victim was found to be alive and had regained consciousness. They decided to cut her throat with a pocket knife. During their attempts to do so Mrs Greeff pleaded with them to hurry up because they were hurting her. One of them replied that the problem was that the knife was too blunt and that he could not hurry up. It was partly because of the premeditation of the murder and partly because of the horror of the murder that the judges imposed the maximum penalty, life imprisonment.


4. Jack Greeff

(Born 1955. Author of  A Greater Share of Honour)

Jack Greeff, born in the Free State town of Vrede, joined the SADF as a boy soldier at the age of 16 and became the youngest member of the Permanent Force to complete the tough Part One Instructor's Course at the Infantry School at Oudtshoorn. After five years service with 5-South African Infantry, both as an instructor and as a platoon sergeant in the operational area, he passed selection for the Recces and qualified as a combat operator. He served in the Recces for 11 years and was the recipient of the Golden Operator's Badge for 10 or more years as a combat operator in Special Forces. He became one of the most decorated soldiers in the SADF - all awarded for achievements and bravery during special operations. This included a well-deserved Honoris Crux. After rising to the rank of major he resigned to pursue a career as a game ranger. He has since successfully directed anti-poaching operations, firstly in South Africa's world-renowned Kruger National Park and later elsewhere in Africa.

Source: http://www.galago.co.za/author_jack_greeff.htm


5. Werner Greeff

  Werner Willem Greeff, Born 14 July 1977, Bellville, SA.

An article from the internet:
Greeff, who will make his return to first class rugby when he plays at inside centre for WP against Griquas in a Currie Cup match at Newlands on Saturday, had just spent the past seven months on the sideline - following neck surgery in March this year.

It is exactly the same vertebrae fusion surgery that Bok flank Schalk Burger underwent in June, following his neck injury.

The only difference is that Greeff had vertebrae four and five in his neck fused, while Burger was numbers six and seven.

For the 29-year-old Greeff, a 12-test Bok, the risk of playing is higher than it would be for Burger, because his (Greeff's) injury is higher up in the neck - while Burger's surgery was virtually between the shoulder blades, where there is more support.

Greeff admits that his next game could literally be his last, as the prospect of another neck injury and further surgery is hovering like the proverbial dark cloud.

"There will always be doubt in the back of your mind," Greeff said, speaking ahead of his first Currie Cup game of the year.

"It is good news in the sense you can play, but you have limited time ... I could face the same surgery. The fact is after every fusion [surgery] your movements are restricted even more.

"The next time [surgery] it is definitely over for me.

"As it is, my doctor told me my sixth and seventh [vertebrae] are already damaged and they are going as well. For me it is just one day at a time.

"If I decide tomorrow my neck doesn't feel right, it won't be worth carrying on. I don't want to be a quadriplegic for the rest of my life. For me it [rugby] is not about a career anymore, because I have achieved everything I wanted to.

"I'm happy with how my career panned out, happy with what I achieved. I will take it one day at a time while I enjoy it and as long as my neck doesn't give me any pain or trouble."

Greeff has certainly had his share of injury setbacks in his life - ankle syndesmosis that ruled him out for six months in 2003 (he returned just in time to go to the World Cup), a groin injury that ruled him out for six months in 1999, a double hernia and lots of other less serious setbacks that ruled out for up to six weeks at a time (shoulder, ankle and knee injuries).

But he says he never gets frustrated on the sideline.

"No, I don't watch a lot of rugby [when I'm injured]," he said.

"I play so much, that I enjoy my rest. If you get injuries you must just switch off so you can start fresh. That is how I've taken every injury and I start from scratch. It doesn't bother me to sit on the sideline."

So what does Werner Greeff hope to get out of his limited time in rugby?

"Just to enjoy it," he said. "The [WP] team is doing well, the young guys are doing well and I enjoy playing with the youngsters. It's only for the enjoyment. That is why I say, if I no longer enjoy it or there is any pain in the neck, then I'll be stupid to continue playing. I won't cripple myself for the rest of my life."

Greeff added that he has no unfinished goals. He has played in a Currie Cup Final, in a World Cup. played for the Barbarians, Tri-Nations and Super 12/14.

One of his last remaining goals were to have played for Victorians (or Vics), the Stellenbosch University second XV. Having played for Maties (Stellenbosch First XV) since 1999, he always admired the attractive running rugby Vics had played over the years.

Last Tuesday he was asked by Vics to help them out in a club game against the University of Cape Town (UCT).

"I could have sat [for WP] on the bench against the Lions, but decided to play for Vics, because I got more game time ... 65 minutes. I enjoy the rugby they play," he said.

The sturdy utility back - who has regularly shifted between fullback, centre and fly-half - played the first of his 12 tests against Argentina in Springs in 2002. His last game for the Boks was against Georgia at the 2003 World Cup, in Sydney.

But the crowning moment of his career was the match-winning try and conversion he scored against Australia in a Tri-Nations game at Ellis Park in 2002 - to give the Boks a 33-31 win over the Wallabies.

By Jan de Koning

 Source: http://fs.planet-rugby.com/News/story_54135.shtml 
Picture credit: http://www.genslin.us/bokke/SARugby.html

INTERNATIONAL RECORD:    South African Caps 2002-03
29/06/02 v Argentina (R) (Springs) W 49-29
06/07/02 v Samoa (Pretoria) W 60-18
20/07/02 v New Zealand (Wellington) L 41-20 (TN)
27/07/02 v Australia (Brisbane) L 38-27 (TN)
10/08/02 v New Zealand (Durban) L 30-23 (TN)
17/08/02 v Australia (Jo'burg) W 33-31 (TN)
09/11/02 v France (Marseilles) L 30-10
16/11/02 v Scotland (Murrayfield) L 21-6
23/11/02 v England (Twickenham) L 53-3
11/10/03 v Uruguay (Perth) W 72-6 (World Cup)
18/10/03 v England (R) (Perth) L 25-6 (World Cup)
24/10/03 v Georgia (Sydney) W 46-19 (World Cup)

Career Record: P12, W5, L7

(R) = Replacement

 Source: http://www.sporting-heroes.net/rugby-heroes/displayhero.asp?HeroID=1673


6. Michael Greeff

Michael Greeff was born 22 February 1982 and played international cricket for the Namibia under nineteen team.

Source: http://content-usa.cricinfo.com/other/content/player/24814.html


7. Prof Jaco M Greeff

Jaco Greeff is Associate Professor at the Department of Genetics, University of Pretoria. He describes himself uniquely on his web page, http://www.up.ac.za/academic/genetics/staff/Greeff/, both in word and picture:

He describes his research interests: "I am interested in a number of topics in evolutionary biology: reproductive strategies, kin selection, cooperative breeding and sex allocation. My other fascination is with fig wasps and trees. They are just phenomenal, offering many cases where mating strategies causes competition or cooperation between kin, thus combining my research interests. My major research efforts have been to combine theories from these sub disciplines. For example: 1) It is common for male dimorphisms in fig wasps, with one male type mating locally (competing with kin), and the other dispersing. When a female oviposits she needs to take these mating strategies of males into account. 2) Cape honeybee (Apis mellifera capensis) workers are unique in that they reproduce through thelytoky, which for practical purposes is like cloning yourself. As a result, conflicts in these colonies are much more elevated than in other honeybees, especially when the queen dies: then workers' strategies range from mimicking the queen to killing sisters. 3) In the Mashona mole-rat inbreeding depression is extreme. With colony members being confined to their burrow system, this means that a strong reproductive skew can exist solely through avoiding the detrimental effects of close inbreeding."

8. Professor Karl Richard Greeff
(1862 - 1938, Wuppertal-Elberfeld, Germany)

  • Ophthalmologist who studied optical history
  • Collected ophthalmic antiques
  • Claimed that George Adams of Fleet Street, London invented the lorgnette, 1780
  • Staged a large public exhibition in Heidelberg in 1913
  • Founder, editor of “Zeitschrift fur Ophthalmologische Optik”
  • Wrote:
    • Lehrbuch der Formen und Fassungen der Augengläser, 1925
    • Die Historische Entwickelung der Brille, 1930
    • Aus der Geschichte der Brille, 1933
    • Der Augenoptikerlehrling Weimar 1938
  • Patron of the Zeiss Museum at Jena, Germany
  • Co-editor of the “Archiv für Augenheilkunde
  • Was a major presenter at the International Ophthalmologic Congress, Amsterdam 1929

Source: http://www.antiquespectacles.com/honor_roll/honor_roll.htm


9. Jan Smuts

Matthijs Greeff and Susanna Claasen had a son,
Hendrik Greeff, who had a daughter,
Jacoba Greeff, who married Johannes Augustus Dreyer and had a daughter,
Susanna Martha Dreyer, who married Izaak de Vlamingh and had a daughter,
Maria Jacoba de Vlamingh, who married Jacobus Abraham van Aarde and had a daughter,
Adriana Martha van Aarde, who married Michiel Smuts and had a son,
Jacobus Abraham Smuts, who had a son,
Jan Christiaan Smuts, Field Marshal, Chancellor, Botanist, Soldier, Statesman.


10. Marijke Greeff

Marijke Greeff is op 1 Julie 1970 in Middelburg-Kaap gebore, maar sy het op Bothaville in die Vrystaat grootgeword en gematrikuleer. Ná skool studeer sy biblioteekkunde aan die Potchefstroomse Universiteit en ná sy haar graad voltooi het, begin sy by die streeksbiblioteek op De Aar werk. Hier ontmoet sy haar man, Francois, en dit is ook hier waar haar enigste seun, Ruan, gebore word.

Ná ses jaar op De Aar verhuis haar gesin na Bothaville, Kimberley en uiteindelik na Potchefstroom waar sy op die oomblik voltyds by Aardklop Nasionale Kunstefees werk en deeltyds skryf.

Marijke het na sy weg is uit die biblioteekberoep, die boekewêreld so gemis dat sy besluit het om te begin skryf. Haar eerste pogings is enkele kortverhale vir die skryfwedstryd wat die Bloemfonteinse Skrywersvereniging jaarliks aanbied en in Augustus 2002 publiseer sy haar eerste liefdesroman by Lapa-uitgewers.

Marijke beskou haarself as ’n ongeneeslike romantikus en is mal oor boeke en lees. Sy skryf omdat sy nie anders kan nie – sy het nou begin en sal nooit weer kan ophou nie. Aangesien die Noord-Kaap haar hart gesteel het en sy mal is oor die winterkoue van die Karoo, is haar lewensideaal om terug te trek De Aar toe, waar sy voltyds kan skryf in ’n huis met ’n groot kaggel.
Bron: http://www.nb.co.za/Tafelberg/tbAuthorCV.asp?iAuthor_id=5637

Marijke Greeff se boeke sluit, oa, in:
Eenkeer in 'n Leeftyd
Vinkel en Koljander
Tweede Lente
Na Höer Hoogtes
Bittersoet Begeerte
Vry om Lief te Hê

11. Johan Greeff

Johan Greeff was Member of Parliament from 14 Feb 1983 to 31 Dec 1986. He was Speaker of the House from 1984 to 1986. His former wife and her new husband were murdered.

Man voor oor 2 Parow-moorde

BELLVILLE. 'n Man van Elsiesrivier wat aangehou word in verband met die onlangse moord op die gewese vrou van 'n voormalige Speaker van die Parlement en haar man van Parow-Noord, het gister weer vlugtig hier in die landdroshof verskyn, berig ons Tygerbergse redaksie. Mnr. Jacobus Arendolf (31), van Leicesterhof 2, Elsiesrivier, se verskyning spruit uit die dood van mnr. Jan Cilliers (74) en sy vrou, Rea (73), van Roy Campbellsingel, Parow, in Mei vanjaar. Die egpaar se lyke is in hul huis aangetref nadat hulle wreed aangerand en vermoor is. Mev. Cilliers was vroeër die vrou van mnr. Johan Greeff, 'n voormalige Speaker. Mnr. Arendolf is nie gevra om te pleit nie. Landdros J.D. Kotzé het die saak tot môre uitgestel. Mnr. Arendolf word aangehou nadat die staat vroeër sy aansoek om borgtog teengestaan het. Mnr. A. Brits verskyn vir die staat. Mnr. Arendolf behartig sy eie verdediging.


12. Phillipus & Martha Greeff

Farm killers each get life plus 15 years

GRAHAMSTOWN -- In a stern warning to criminals who prey on farmers and old people, the high court here yesterday sentenced two young men to life plus 15 years' jail for the murder of an elderly and frail Hanover farming couple.

This is one of the heaviest sentences for farm murders in Eastern Cape legal history.

Judge Joss Jones gave William van Heerden, 38, two life sentences for the murder of Mr Philippus Greeff, 75, and his wife Martha, 71, as well as a 15-year sentence for robbery.

He sentenced Flippie Booysen, 24, to life imprisonment for the murder of Mr Greeff, 18 months for assaulting Mrs Greeff and 15 years for robbery.

The killers will spend the rest of their natural lives in prison. -- ECN

Source: http://www.dispatch.co.za/1999/05/26/easterncape/KILLERS.HTM


13. Melissa Greeff

Melissa Greeff, 2006 South African Women's Open Chess Champion (Aged 11 years 11 months and 17 days), rated 1668. She took the title again in 2007.

Melissa Greeff was born in 1994. In 2009 she held the title "Woman international Master" with an ELO rating of 2034. During the years 2003 to 2008 she had 30 wins (50%), 7 draws (12%), and 23 losses (38%). Recorded games by Melissa: http://www.365chess.com/players/Melissa_Greeff


14. Prof Awie Greeff

Prof A P Greeff, MSc (Voorligtingsielk), PhD (Stell), BEd (UNISA), is professor van gesinsielkunde, Dept Sielkunde, Universiteit Stellenbosch.

Bron: http://academic.sun.ac.za/psychology/afrikaans/GreeffAP.htm


15. Annie Greeff


Annie Greeff started her career as a teacher, but also gained experience in various other fields. In 1996 she became a Training and Development Consultant and has since developed and presented extensive ranges of Emotional Intelligence and Resilience or Wellness training programmes, facilitated group processes and offered life coaching for executives in various corporate companies. She is the author of Resilience (Vol 1 & 2).

Source: http://www.crownhouse.co.uk/index.php?page=authordetails&author=125


16. Caspar Greeff (BA LLB)

Caspar Greeff was born on 8 July 1902. He studied law, became a magistrate, and later rose to become Secretary for Justice in Vorster's government. He was, at different times, also Head of the Diamond Commission and Head of the Housing Commission.

Source: Verbal account from his niece, Amy Greeff (born 1926).


17. Prof Caspar Greeff

Professor Casparus Johannes Boyd Greeff was born at Cape Town on 13 February 1935.

Prof Greeff has been running for 37 years. He has completed 50 races of 50 miles and over and at least 120 races of over 50 km. He completed his 33rd Comrades Marathon in 9 hours 50 minutes on 16 June 2006, aged 71 years. He has run 33 Comrades, 11 Karoo marathons (50 miles), three 100-milers (two of these, ultra boringly, around the track in a sports stadium, round and round a 400m track 400 times), 2 London to Brighton races and one 100-km race. He has also run 23 Two-Oceans (56 km) and 17 Korkies (56 km). He has run the Voet of Africa race 9 times.  He has also run a whole marathon completely underground, in the gold mines of the Witwatersrand, where the underground tunnels extend for hundreds of miles. Ordinary marathons are not something that Caspar trains for - he uses ordinary marathons as training for the ultras! By August 2006, he had run a marathon every week of the year, with exceptions only when there was no marathon on the calendar, or when injury prevented it.

A summary of some of the major races:



Number of times run

Permanent number

East London to Port Alfred

160 km, 100 miles



Hector Norris Park

160 km, 100 miles



London to Brighton

90 km




88 km

33 times



80 km




64 km



2 Oceans

56 km




56 km



Peter Korkie

53 km




52 km



City to City

50 km




42 km



Knysna Forest

42 km



Red Hill

42 km



Voet of Africa

42 km



TOTAL   171  


 (A brief professional CV for Prof Greeff may be viewed at:"caspar+greeff"&hl=en&gl=uk&ct=clnk&cd=4)


18. Francois Greef - Cricket


 Fielding details for Francois Greef

Teams and leagues that the player has represented:



 Free State (U17)

 U17 Cricket Week

 Free State (U19)

 First XI

 Kei (U17)

 U17 Cricket Week

 Southern Free State

 First XI

Fielding details for Francois Greef in matches played 1 Jan 2000 - 12 Nov 2006





c & b

c wk





Grey College (Bloem) v Southern Free State

2 Oct 2004















c            = caught
c & b     = caught and bowled
c wk      = caught by wicketkeeper
st           = stumped
RO        = run out


19. Francois Greeff - Author

Francois Greeff was born at Klerksdorp on 19 May 1959 and lived the first twelve years of his life in the Great Karoo, at Carnarvon, where he learned to speak fluent Afrikaans. His high school years were spent at Worcester High School, at Worcester in the Boland, surrounded by picturesque mountains on all sides. His classmates influenced his development greatly, and out of forty pupils there were several whose parents had come from England, France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Hungary, and Lithuania. All these children were fluent in their parents' tongue and there were also more than a half a dozen Jewish kids who spoke Yiddish! The cosmopolitan influence this had on him lasted the rest of his life and always kept him tolerant of the difference in other people. During the South African Border War Francois served as a Paramedic in the South African Air Force for two and a half years. In this time he buried one of his best friends, a chopper pilot, who died when his helicopter was shot down over Mocambique.

 By the time Francois was twenty five years old he had had twenty five different jobs, mainly due to the fact that neither he nor his employers knew that he had Bipolar Affective Disorder. In order to survive financially Francois turned to Self Employment as a strategy for survival. He opened an a la carte Restaurant on the Main Road of Seapoint around 1980. Six years later he migrated to Johannesburg (via Richard's Bay, where he delivered his first child, Belinda, at home, himself). In Johannesburg he set up business as an antiques dealer. He flourished and bought a house in Cape Town and a building containing two flats in Johannesburg. In this building his son was born, and again, he delivered the child himself, at home. In memory of the birth of his son he named the building at 14 Isipingo Street "Monument House", so that it might forever stand there as a monument to the birth of his son on leap years day, 1988. Two years later his second daughter, Maria, was born in Johannesburg General Hospital with severe hydrocephalus and died four days later. This, and further consequent personal disaster saw him leave the Witwatersrand and settle in Stellenbosch, near Cape Town. At Stellenbosch he set up business as a builder and property developer. Again, he flourished and invested in land and buildings, becoming a landlord once again. Eight years later, in 1999, he left South Africa to live in London, UK.

 Francois wrote a book, The Hidden Code of Cryptic Crosswords, that explains how cryptic crosswords work. The book was published in Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, USA, Canada, Europe and Great Britain. He started writing it while he lived in Nelmapius Street, Stellenbosch, and finished it on the computers that are provided for homeless people at London's Day Centres, while sleeping in the rain on the pavements of London. He became homeless mainly because of being a disabled person, disabled by a severe and enduring mental illness, Bipolar Disorder. For several years prior to being homeless he was also unable to care for himself and his Uncle Caspar looked after him, fed him and housed him. Such is disability, and mental illness. Today he still lives with a full time carer who is also his partner. She comes from Athens in Greece and they hope to be married soon. He has been a member of Mensa, the high IQ society, for about a quarter of a century, and it is probable that no other member of Mensa has ever been homeless!

 He has had severely advanced Cancer throughout his whole body (Diffuse large B cell Lymphoma affecting the right testicle, retroperitoneum, lungs and suprclavicular fossa, diagnosed at stage IVB.). The oncologists told him in September 2005 that he'd be dead by Christmas, but it turned out that they were wrong about which Christmas! He was completely cured of this severely advanced cancer, but a year later lightning struck in the same place and he was diagnosed with cancer again.

 He has been expelled from university, but he went to the ombudsman who told them to take him back, because they had wrongfully expelled him. He is currently (2006/2007) still involved in a lawsuit against Kingston University as a consequence of this expulsion. He once used to own a house and a business in Stellenbosch and he has studied at Stellenbosch University, Pretoria University, Wits Technikon, Damelin College, Hammersmith University (London), Westminster University (London), London Guildhall University (Night school, where he won a prize for the best paper, in a global exam - while homeless and sleeping in the rain) and Kingston University, who expelled him.

 He has been a member of Worcester Yacht Club and Theewaterskloof Yacht Club where he often camped for weekends. He kept a boat there and did a great deal of sailing. His love of outdoor camping took him to many interesting places, including Kruger National Park, the legendary Groot Marico of Herman Charles Bosman (which turned out to be a tiny, dusty village without side streets, nor any monument to Bosman at all), Mafikeng, and back to the place of his birth, Klerksdorp. He is an avid portrait photographer and develops his own black and white photos at home. He and his first wife researched the genealogy of the entire Kempen Clan in South Africa. He has also researched his children's ancestors and put the result on the internet at www.Greeff.info. At this web address he manages the genealogical website of the entire Greeff Clan in South Africa.

 He now lives in London where he runs a small charity for disabled people who are homeless, www.Good4You.org.uk. More than half of all homeless people in London are also disabled. Disability is still the prime cause of homelessness, just as it used to be in the days when the blind begged on the streets.


20. Kommandant Hendrik Adriaan Greeff (1828 - 1884)

Many, many years ago, on the farm Lichtenburg in the area of Durbanville near Cape Town, Hendrik Adriaan Greeff was born.

Later he was an apprentice to a certain De Vos in Worcester in the wagon making industry, but in his heart he yearned for a more adventurous life.


At the age of nineteen he moved to the north with other families on their way to the hunting-fields. A full Vaal River brought their trek to a standstill, but the resourceful young Greeff quickly compiled a working team and started constructing the first ferry over the Vaal River, close to where Bloemhof is situated today. After more than a year, the ferry was completed, but business was good as many hunting parties and other trekkers made use of his services.

This ferry life soon bored him and he sold his "business" for £500, a fortune at that stage. He bought a wagon and oxen and decided to dare to undertake his own hunting expedition on the other side of the Vaal River.

The interior however, was untamed and full of surprises and after encounters with hostile tribes in the hunting-fields, he lost all his possessions and returned to the Cape Colony with only his horse, his servant and £50 in his purse.

On his way back to his family in Tulbagh and Durbanville, he stayed over in Hopetown where he met and married Susanna Maria Redelinghuys in 1855. Their firstborn (the first of fourteen children!), Jacoba Elizabeth, nicknamed Nonnie, was born in Tulbagh. Later Nonnie would become the wife of the famous Boer General and "Lion of the West-Transvaal", Koos de la Rey.

Sannie and Hendrik Greeff
with 5 of their children, 1875

Doornfontein, 4 678 morgen in size, was a choice farm with strong fountains and a beautiful marshland that separated it from the other neighbouring farm, Kaalplaats. Here was enough and proper trees for firewood, and also excellent agricultural land and grazing-land.

More and more farms in the area got "bywoners" (sub-farmers), like the families of Abram Swanepoel, Abram de Villiers, Karel Weyer, Hans de Beer, the Van den Berghs, Krugers, Ludicks, Oosthuizens, Redelinghuyse, Pretorius', Steinmans, Sneyders' and Viljoens.

Greeff used this farm as his base, farmed in summer and hunted in winter. During the hunting expeditions, his wife Sannie collected ostrich feathers. When he came home, she washed, plumed and sold the feathers. With the money she collected in this manner, she bought the adjoining farm Kaalplaats.


Answer to prayer

On his way back home from the direction of Marico after a hunting expedition in 1862, they got lost. It was a very dry year and their water ran short. Greeff did not yet know the area well and couldn't find water. The children, four of them at that stage, started crying about the thirst they did not understand. Greeff halted and walked into the veld in the hope of finding a pan or something. He saw a number of trees in a dale and decided to go on his knees and ask the Higher Hand for relief. In his prayer Greeff promised that if he found water, he would return on his fiftieth birthday to the same place to express his gratitude. He then heard a voice: "Look in that tree. There is water", but he thought he was hallucinating and wanted to move on. Again he heard the voice: "Look in that tree. There is water".

He looked at the trees in the dale and saw a large Camdeboo (white stinkwood) between the others and went closer. Breast-high the trunk forked and amazingly, there was delicious, cool water in the hollow that formed - enough for their immediate need. His prayer was answered.

Sixteen years later Greeff and his whole family returned to this place for a Thanksgiving service, a tradition that is still preserved today. Many of Greeff's descendants still assemble here on their fiftieth birthdays to have a Thanksgiving service. At this place, approximately 10km north of Lichtenburg on the Manana Road, the Greeff Monument was erected.

After this experience Greeff concentrated more on farming and hunted less.

We want a Town

Potchefstroom was the closest trading centre and approximately 150 km or "14 uur rijdens te paarde" away. A need for a town with a church and shops became stronger and Greeff and the Boers in the area saw Doornfontein with its abundant water, firewood and building material as the designated place.

Erven was surveyed and an irrigation ditch from the fountain for "natte erven" was laid on and the first new settlers moved in. In 1865 the first application for town establishment was addressed to the House of Assembly, signed by 132 males in the area, and they started compiling a number of town regulations. Greeff wanted to name the town Lichtenburg, a name that he carried from his birth and because he wanted it to be a town whose light would shine over the area, not just with regard to hospitality and prosperity, but also in respect of religion.

In 1868 the name "Lichtenberg", (a mistake still commonly made) appeared on the official map of the SAR, but the House of Assembly did not react yet. The men met again to discuss the town regulations and to obtain an appeal on speedy proclamation from the House of Assembly. The well-known Voortrekker savant, JG Bantjes, also established himself in Lichtenburg and signed the regulation as witness.

Eventually proclamation

Eventually Lichtenburg was officially proclaimed as town in mid-winter on 25 July 1873 by Pres. TF Burgers.

Since then many interesting events took place, such as Greeff's son-in-law, Jacobus Herculaas de la Rey who established himself here, the Anglo Boer War, the Rebellion, the incredible rich diamond diggings which had the world market close to a collapse, the success on agricultural area, the burning marshlands...Everything contributed to realise the dreams and ideals of Commandant Hendrik Adriaan Greeff (1828 - 1884) for Lichtenburg to still be a beautiful, growing town with its light shining over this area - really the pride of Northwest.

Source: Lichtenburg 1865 - 1985 AD Bosman, quoted on http://home.intekom.com/lichtenburg/stig-e.htm

Books that mention HA Greeff:

Stigter van Lichtenburg, Kommandant H A Greeff deur Gretha du Preez (Greeff)

Foto-album van Lichtenburg, 1875 tot 1975 deur A D Bosman

Stories uit die ou dae deur Kowie van Niekerk (Greeff)

Ampie Bosman:  Die Wel en Wee van Hendrik Adriaan Greeff

Ampie Bosman: Lichtenburg 1865 - 1985

Rowan, Zelda. 2003. Nonnie de la Rey 1856-1923. Master's Dissertation at the department of Historical and Heritage Studies at the University of Pretoria (etd-10122004-102524). Source: http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-10122004-102524/


21. Stephanus Carel Greeff

Stephanus Carel Greeff, founder of the town Laingsburg, was born on 26 Sep 1825 and died on 2 Sep 1893. He married twice, first to Johanna Theron and then to Martha Maria Botma.

Stephanus Greeff first established Laingsburg in the 1870s. He bought the farm Vischkuil-aan-de-Buffelsrivier (fishing hole on the Buffalo River). The town only started developing when the railway line to it was completed. It was first named Buffelsrivier but this was later changed first to Nassau and finally to Laingsburg, after John Laing who was Commissioner of Crown Lands at the time. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laingsburg,_Western_Cape)

p4.....Mnr S.C. Greeff koop toe die plaas "Vischkuil aan de Buffelsrivier",
groot 11,345 morge vir 800 pond, met die oog op die uitlê van 'n dorp.
.........Uit die aantal hout-en sinkhuisies by die spoorweghalte "Baffalo
River" het ongemerk die dorpie NASSAU gegroei.*1
.........Op uitnodiging van Mnre S.C.Greeff en Ryk Meiring kom Mnr T.Laing,
kommissaris van Kroongronde, hierheen. Deur sy toedoen is die servituut toe
sodanig gewysig dat 'n pad van 150 voet 'n deurtog deur die dorpaan die
trekboere sou verseker. Om sy naam te verewig, is die dorpie toe vvernoem na
"Laings Town", later Laingsburg*2
*1 Aangesien verwarring met "Baffalo River", Oos Londen, voorkom, vind die
naamsverandering plaas.
*2 Die naamsverandering is deur mnr. Laing aan die hand gedoen omdat die
boere "Laings Town" "Linkstoon" uitgespreek het.


22. Nonnie Greeff


Nonnie Greeff was born Jacoba Elizabeth Greeff in 1856. Her father was Hendrik Adriaan Greeff, founder of Lichtenburg, and her husband was General Koos de la Rey (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UGh4lA1S7yc). Her brother, if I am not mistaken, was G.J. Greeff who was awarded the Decoratie voor Getrouwe Dienst 1899 - 1902. Nonnie is not a remarkable woman because of the people who surrounded her, she is a remarkable woman in her own right.

 Zelda Rowan is to be commended for the excellent study she has done into the life and times of one of the greatest women in both the Greeff clan and the history of South Africa. If you know how to contact Zelda Rowan please ask her to contact me by email at GoodGreeff@Greeff.info. Read her dissertation by clicking on the link:

 Rowan, Zelda. 2003. Nonnie de la Rey 1856-1923. Master's Dissertation at the department of Historical and Heritage Studies at the University of Pretoria (etd-10122004-102524)

 Source: http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-10122004-102524/


23 Louie Greeff

Source: Scope Magazine, March 25, 1966; quoted on http://www.beyondxtreme.co.za

The first thing that Louie Greeff said to me when we first spoke to each other was that the idiot who wrote the article (below) did not spell his name right.
His name is Louie Greeff. He was born on 28 September 1951, and ended up in an orphanage by the time he was six. He has two brothers, Johan Martin Greeff and Andre Greeff. His father was Jacob, Jacobus Greeff, as was his grandfather. His mother was Gertrude S C Smith, the daughter of John Martin Smith.
Louie did swim down the Zambezi and his story is on his web site.
Visit Louie's web site at http://www.beyondxtreme.co.za

This article about a man attempting to swim the length of the Zambezi river appeared on the www.telegraph.co.uk website. It is reprinted in it's entirety below, with acknowledgements to the author, Inigo Gilmore in Johannesburg:

A 48-YEAR-OLD South African adventurer is planning to swim the length of the 1,700-mile Zambezi river, braving crocodiles, hippos, treacherous whirlpools and sharks in an attempt to enter the record books.

Louis Greef embarks on his quest this week, two years after he dreamt up the challenge. Although he has no pedigree as a swimmer, Mr Greef, who stands 6ft 4in tall, insists that he has the willpower to conquer one of the world's most dangerous rivers.

He said: "I have survived nine African jails and nine attempted car hijackings, so this is not so worrying. The crocodiles are obviously something to watch out for, but I am more worried about the sharks and the hippos. I'll have to keep an eye on the whirlpools too because they can suck you under and some are big enough to swallow boats whole. One went down a whirlpool in the Zambezi just two weeks ago, killing the guy on board."

Mr Greef's 13-week journey begins at the source of the Zambezi, deep in the Zambian bush. The river then meanders through Zambia, before weaving its way into Angola, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe and into Mozambique, flowing out into the Indian Ocean. Two legs of the swim will be particularly hazardous: a 250-mile stretch through war-torn Angola and the treacherous lower Zambezi.

According to Mr Greef, there are 14,000 crocodiles in the lower Zambezi plus thousands of hippos. He will reach speeds above 30 miles an hour in the faster flowing currents and will be accompanied by sharks that swim more than 200 miles upstream from the Mozambican coast in search of food. The Angolan section of the trip is also challenging - fishermen on the river have recently been attacked and killed by Unita rebels who control the area.

Mr Greef, who once survived 49 days in an Angolan jail after being accused of illegal trading, is not unduly alarmed. He said: "When I was arrested and thrown into an underground jail with 18 Angolans only nine of us came out alive. We were stripped naked and shoved into cells. The others died of dehydration and various illnesses. I pulled through by placing myself into a 'mental yoga', where you put mind over body, and that is what I will do on the Zambezi."

Mr Greef has been jailed nine times in several African countries. He was jailed in Uganda for running over and killing a drunken man, in South Africa for possession of too many passports, and twice in the Central African Republic - first for running over a chicken belonging to the head of immigration and later for running over a man who "walked into his car".

He was also incarcerated in Namibia on diamond smuggling charges, in Morocco accused of spying for the United States and in Botswana he was charged with spying for South Africa. He also saw the inside of a Zambian jail after being accused of harbouring political dissidents. Along the way he has escaped nine attempted hijackings of his vehicles in different parts of Africa, most memorably in Uganda where an armed man pushed a gun in his face and demanded the car, only to back off when Mr Greef refused.

Mr Greef says he has long been driven by wanderlust. For 15 months he lived and hunted, using a bow and arrow, with the bushmen in the Kalahari desert and has trekked through some of the remotest corners of Africa. He had wanted to swim the Amazon but was beaten to it by another explorer. He believes that the Zambezi is a worthy substitute. He said: "This has never been attempted and probably no one will ever try again. For me, life is about the next event, what is going to happen and how I can survive it within a hair's breadth, knowing I was close to dying. Looking ahead to the Zambezi, the hippos scare me the most because they attack boats and canoes and most fatalities in Africa are caused by them.

"There is an old trick where you can throw pieces of clothing at hippos to scare them off so I will carry plenty of old T-shirts with me. As for the Zambezi sharks, I have no answers to that so I'll just have to take it as it comes. The funny thing is I am not a natural swimmer, in fact I hate swimming, but this is part of the challenge."

Mr Greef will be accompanied by a photographer and a film crew in a four-wheel drive vehicle to record his adventure. He is paying for the trip out of his own pocket, hoping to establish himself internationally as an intrepid explorer. He said: "If I do this one then I've got seven other feats that are just as crazy."


24. Marguerite Blanch Crabbe Greeff

George W Crabb and Sarah Geary begat
John N Crabb who married Jeanne B P Rosseau de la Gautraie and begat
Edward Luis
Crabb who married Sarah Georgiana Birkbeck and begat
Marguerite Blanch

The Crabb family originated from Cuba and Marguerite's father, Edward Crabb, was a sugar refiner. Marguerite who was born on 1 Mar 1876 in New York. She married John Gerhard William Greeff on 26 Jun 1901. Marguerite Blanch Crabbe died in 1961 at Great Neck, NY, USA.
Marguerite also went by the name of Daisy. She appeared on the census of 1880 at Great Neck, Queens Co, NY, USA; aged 3. As of 26 Jun 1901, her married name was Greeff. The Marguerite Crabbe Greeff Preserve, a nature reserve on Long Island, was named after her.


25. Arnold Greeff

Droogmaker van die Jaar! (2003/4)



26. Dr Louis Greeff

Dr Louis Greeff by die blesbok van Pieter en Miempie Vorster wat onlangs sy nuuskierigheid vir die tuinslang nie kon bedwing nie. Pieter sê dat hy en Miempie die een oggend by hulle plot op Kwaggasvlakte aangekom het en Miempie het bemerk dat die tuinslang nie meer aan die kraan was nie, dit was ook nêrens te sien nie. Toe hulle mooi kyk sien hulle ook net twee van die drie mak blesbokke wat hulle op die plot aanhou. Diefstal was die eerste gedagte wat deur hulle gedagtes geflits het, maar na 'n bietjie gesoek het hulle op die blesbokram afgekom met die tuinslang om sy horings en lyf gewoel. Die twee ooie was maar skrikkerig vir hierdie nuwe gedaante van hulle ram en wou glad nie naby hom kom nie. Dr Louis is uitgeroep en nadat hy die bok verdoof het, kon die tuinslang losgewikkel word. Mens kan glo dit is dalk die laaste keer dat die blesbok met 'n tuinslang in 'n stryd gewikkel gaan raak.


27. Karen Zoid

Picture Source: www.manne.com/eng/28112005.htm

Karen Zoid (born Karen Louise Greeff in Belgium, daughter of a South African diplomat) is a South African rock artist, vocalist and guitarist. In 2005 she married Don Reinecke and on 29 January 2007 the couple had a son, Ben.
Visit Karen's web site at:
Also see Who's Who of SA:


28. Ockert Greeff

Die Brixton Moord en Roof Orkes maak Afrikaanse rock musiek. Op die oomblik bestaan die band uit Drikus (Brixton) Barnard (op baskitaar), Ockert (Moord) Greeff (op tromme en brandewyn), Andries (Roof) Bezuidenhout (lead vocals en kitaar) en Kapelaan Pat Plank (kitaar). Hulle musiek handel oor alledaagse onderwerpe soos drank, dwelms, misdaad, road rage, oorlog, en hulle het selfs 'n love song.
Source: http://home.mweb.co.za/bm/bmro/


29. Dr Mynderd Jacobus Greeff

10 Dec 1954. Graduates MB ChB
Source: http://www.geocities.com/gremlinlost/myfather.htm

Visit his son's web site at: http://www.geocities.com/gremlinlost/index.htm

Mynderd Jacobus Greeff was born on 19 January 1921. He saw active service during WW II and studied Medicine after the war, graduating in 1954. To read his story, as told by his son, also Mynderd Jacobus Greeff, click on the link:

My Father's Story: A Soldier's Biography


30. Karen Greeff


Karen cycles for charity the peri-peri way

Source: Anglo Platinum. Platinum Brief. June 2007. A digital newsletter for the corporate office.

Anglo Platinum management accountant Karen Brough did her bit for charity recently when she completed the gruelling 1,300km Peri-Peri Cycle Tour in aid of Future Forward in April.


Future Forward is an organisation dedicated to helping disadvantaged youngsters to find their footing in society having left the care of shelters after reaching the age of 18. The cycle tour is an annual fund-raising exercise to support the venture, and this year raised in excess of R200,000 that will benefit its many young beneficiaries. Karen, a keen all-round sportswoman and cyclist, heard about the event from a friend and immediately set about organising sponsorship to secure not only her entry into the tour but muchneeded funds for the charity. She was able to drum up more than R70,000, with R50,000 coming from Anglo Platinum’s corporate office, directors and colleagues, and R10,000 from Anglo Coal. Additional funds were contributed by two Mondi employees, as well as friends, relatives and acquaintances. Anglo Platinum and Anglo Coal also provided team members with branded T-shirts and tog bags, as well as magnetised signage for support vehicles. Karen’s participation in the tour is quite remarkable as only a matter of weeks before the event, she had been recovering from injuries sustained in the Argus Cycle Tour where she was involved in a 25-bike pile-up. However, following the tradition of a sporting family with boundless tenacity, She reported fit for the start at Eastgate Shopping Centre in Johannesburg. Her father is a veteran of 32 Comrades Marathons and she  as, incidentally, backpacked the Himalayas and reached the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro. The tour was broken into nine daily stages, heading as far north as Mokopane (Potgietersrus) before sweeping down to Nelspruit, then east to Komatipoort and the final destination – Maputo. Karen describes the route as very beautiful, but extremely difficult at times. Lest anyone suggest that this trip was a bit of a holiday, just note that a stage the riders regarded as a rest day was still an arduous 125km. Safe arrival at Maputo was celebrated with a major prawn extravaganza, hence the reference to peri-peri in the tour’s name. And why not? The group had raised R200,000 between the 19 of them for Future Forward, including Karen’s impressive group sponsorship . She views the tour as a marvellous experience and is profoundly grateful to her sponsors who made it possible for her to participate and make her contribution to the cause. She already has her sights set on next year’s event and is training hard to make sure she’ll be there.


31. Johannes Christoffel Greeff

Johannes Christoffel Greeff represented South Africa at weightlifting in the 75 kg Middleweight Division at the 1956 Olympics at Melbourne Australia. He was placed tenth in his division on 24 Nov 1956, with total points of 365,0. He shared this point count with the athlete who was placed ninth.