Party in danger zone

2014-12-24 00:00

A DUSTY military camp in Kandahar, Afghanistan, is where Howick local Jack Haskins Jr will be celebrating his Christmas this year.

Prone to surprise rocket attacks and being away from the loving arms of his family, Haskins will be braving his Christmas with Nato (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) military, and a crew of paramedics.

“We work every day here, so myself and fellow paramedics will be on call and standby for any emergencies within and outside the Kandahar military base,” he said.

“There was a base attack the other day. A few rockets landed in the base followed by a ground attack outside the fence. Fortunately there were no ­injuries.”

Haskins said it is his first Christmas away from home but he had decided to make the best of it.

“A bunch of us here will be having a Christmas barbecue and a secret ­Santa.

“We are all good mates here so I’m sure Christmas Day in the camp will be lots of fun even though we’re all miles away from friends and family,” said Haskins.

Meanwhile, south-west from Kandahar and 6 595 km as the crow flies, Durbanite and paramedic Ceron Jacobs thought she had to spend her Christmas on an oil rig in the middle of the Congo, but managed to pull strings to fly home on Christmas Eve.

Jacobs said she had to come home to her family for Christmas as she had missed out on so much already.

“I have been in the Congo for my birthday, my daughter’s birthday, and my partner Shawn’s birthday and I couldn’t see myself having Christmas here as well,” she said.

“When I thought I would be here for Christmas I did prepare myself mentally but I would much rather be at home this time of the year.

“Family means a lot to me, something I have realised even more whilst working out here, and that’s why I am done and won’t be coming back after completing my contract.”


Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.