The Air Force of Zimbabwe (AFZ) yesterday handed over household property worth thousands of dollars to the Fenyere family, whose house was razed to the ground by flames when the Agusta Bell 412 (AB 412) helicopter crashed into their house in Arcturus, Mashonaland East Province.
The accident, which occurred on April 23, claimed four lives – two AFZ pilots, Wing Commander Thomas Tinashe Manyowa and Flight Lieutenant Anita Mapiye, an aircraft technician Flight Sergeant Tinodiwanashe Chikamhi and an 18-month-old toddler, Jade Fenyere.
Jade was sleeping with her twin sister, Jada, who together with her mother Mrs Florence Nyatsanza, sustained burns from the flames.
Mrs Nyatsanza has since been discharged from hospital while Jada is recovering well while still admitted.
Yesterday, the AFZ handed over property which includes two double beds, a gas stove with a 9kg tank, television set, blankets, cutlery and pots, a complete solar power unit, a kitchen unit, a wardrobe, food stuffs, a lounge suite and US$400, among others.
The property was acquired through the Commander AFZ Charity Fund (CAFZCF).
The assistance followed an appeal by the Fenyere family so that it recovers from the effects of the accident.
Speaking while handing over the property, Commander AFZ Air Marshal Elson Moyo, said they will continue to stand with the Fenyere family and families of the deceased aircrew.
“Healing from this painful experience will not only come the passage of time but will be a result of the support we receive from family and friends. The Minister of Defence and War Veterans Affairs (Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri) on her visit her, outlined the commitment by the Zimbabwe Defence Forces to support the family and I wish to state that this official assistance will be done once the board of inquiry on the accident is completed,” said Air Marshal Moyo.
He said the assistance handed demonstrates the AFZ’s support for the Fenyere family as they find strength to come to terms with the sad loss of their daughter Jade.
Air Marshal Moyo said they will continue to support the Fenyere family and the families of the deceased AFZ staffers
He thanked the benevolence of their partners who assisted in mobilising resources as well as the dedication and commitment by the board and management of the Charity Fund.
The chairman of the CAFZCF board of trustees, Mr Toindepi Muganyi, called on well-wishers to support the charity fund so as to help the family restore its lost and damaged properties.
“Tragedies like these do take a big strain emotionally and materially and it is my sincere hope that this family will find comfort in God and the support it is receiving not only from the community, but also from well-wishers,” he said.
Mr George Fenyere said he was grateful for the support he is receiving from AFZ since the accident occurred.
“As the Fenyere family, we are very grateful to the AFZ and Government for the continued support that they have been rendering us, starting from the day of the crash, during the funeral here up to the date we buried my daughter in Bocha. I appreciate the support as it is the beginning of a relationship between the family and AFZ,” he said.
The Commander AFZ Charity Fund was established in 2011 as a vehicle to mobilise resources and implement projects aimed at assisting disadvantaged people and communities.
Since inception, the charity fund has completed a number of projects including a clinic, primary and secondary schools at Murongwe in Mashonaland Central and the construction of Negove Clinic in Mberengwa District, Midlands Province, among others.