Intruder opens fire on farmer, family
Ügen Vos, Beeld
Pretoria - A Magaliesburg farmer has been left without sensation in his leg after being shot in the spinal cord during a farm attack.
Bouke Tack, 57, and his wife Olga, 53, run Golden Valley - a diary and cheese factory - in Magaliesburg.
Tack, who was taken to Milpark hospital in Johannesburg, was expected to undergo months of rehabilitation.
According to Tack’s wife, one of the bullets was still lodged in his spinal cord, but doctors couldn’t remove it as it was near a sensitive vertebra.
She told how she, her husband and their son Marnus, 18, were awoken just before 07:00 last Sunday by barking dogs and a terrible pounding on the back door.
They found an armed intruder in the kitchen who said someone was slaughtering their cattle. He then opened fire on them.
“He wasn’t even tense. It was like a normal conversation to him.”
The couple ran to fetch their firearm from their bedroom after which Tack fired two shots at the intruder. He scared off the man, who as he fled, shot Tack through the window.
The intruder and four other men fled by car.
Marnus applied first aid to his wounded father while his mother struggled to get a cellphone signal to call for help. She eventually got hold of a neighbour, who called police and paramedics.
Neighbours helped put Tack in the car. Two paramedics met them along the way, after which he was airlifted to Milpark.
“He was paralysed immediately and there was a lot of blood but I have never before in my life seen neighbours come together like that,” the injured man’s wife said.
Meanwhile, the attackers were stopped by police. Three of them, including a farm worker who had worked for the Tacks for three months, were arrested. The shooter and another man managed to flee.
“I don’t think it was a racial thing or that it was about political sensation, but it was a well-planned and despicable attack,” she said.
“There is a sense of entitlement and lawlessness that is taking hold in South Africa and whether such attacks happen on farms or in the townships is immaterial, someone has to give a voice to the victims.”