It is with sadness we have to announce that Ms Anna Venter passed away on Wednesday 3 January 2007 in Bloemfontein, South Africa.
Anna was born in Rustenburg and attended school there where she developed an interest in sport. Later as a student at the Potchefstroom University among Anna’s many activities and sports she excelled in Lifesaving and Hockey.
After graduating, Anna taught at Kroonstad Agricultural High School where her extra curricular activities included Swimming and Hockey. As a geography teacher she enjoyed exploring South Africa and later she travelled extensively through many parts of the world. Travelling with her was always a joy as she had such a wide knowledge and interest in the world about her.
Since moving to Kroonstad in 1972 she has been a member of Aqua Lifesaving Club and been a driving force in Free State Lifesaving, serving in many positions including Coach and Manager.
Anna gained National Lifesaving Colours in 1978 and competed in Germany. She was later appointed Coach of the National team. Lately she has competed in Masters and taken her Club team to Rescue 94 in Cardiff and Newque (United Kingdom), Rescue 96 in Durban (South Africa), Rescue 98 in Auckland (New Zealand), Rescue 2000 in Sydney (Australia), Rescue 2002 in Daytona and Orlando (USA). Unfortunately she missed Rescue 04 in Viareggio (Italy) when she was diagnosed with cancer. However she attended Rescue 06 in Geelong and Lorne (Australia) again, but unfortunately due to her illness she could not compete, however she was able to manage her club team.
As Stillwater Competitions Director for many years Anna ran many successful National Stillwater Championships, introduced “open water lifesaving events to still water lifesaving and assisted with compilation of the first competition manual for Lifesaving South Africa. She also ran the first Stillwater officials course in Kroonstad. In 1992 she was elected Director of Lifesaving where she initiated the new awards structure.
Anna was the recipient of South African Lifesaving Honours Award and the Meritorious Service Award for her contributions to the lifesaving.
Lifesaving South Africa lost a great friend, a remarkable person and a very dedicated person who has put her work and lifesaving as a top priority of her short life.
The International Lifesaving Federation sends their sincere condolences to her family and friends.