84: Wally Hayward (1908-2006) – South African Legend

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Manage episode 298747523 series 2680589
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By Andy Milroy You can read, listen, or watch An audio podcast episode has been added to this article. Early conditioning can be very important. Wally Hayward came from a very tough background. His father, Wallace George Hayward, the son of a coal agent, had been born in Peckham in London, England in 1880, and emigrated to South Africa sometime between 1901 and 1906, in his early twenties. It looks probable he actually arrived soon after 1904 when the sand bar which had restricted Durban Harbour to bigger ships was dredged and deepened. This allowed the weekly Union Castle passenger ships from Southampton to enter the port. Bearing in mind Wallace’s later employment, and absence from Union Castle passenger lists, it is possible that he served as a barman on one of these passenger ships, departing the ship at Durban. On ultrarunninghistory.com, each article/episode takes about 30 hours of effort to research, write, script, edit, publish and publicize. Each month more there are more than 100,000 downloads of these history stories. Help is needed to continue this effort. Please consider becoming a patreon member of ultrarunning history. You can become part of the effort to preserve and document this history by signing up to contribute a few dollars each month. Visit https://ultrarunninghistory.com/member Durban, South Africa After arriving in Durban he met Cornelia Gerhardina Jacoba Kritzinger. Cornelia was the youngest of eight children of an Afrikaner farmer, Louis Kritzinger and his wife Rachel. The Kritzinger family had a 3000 acre farm in Zululand, then part of the British province of Natal (now KwaZulu-Natal). The three sons worked on the farm with their father and the women had a whole raft of household tasks to complete - baking and preserving, making and repairing clothes, sewing, knitting and cooking. The sisters took in turn to tackle each of these tasks. Cornelia Hayward Cornelia was born in 1878 but by her mid-twenties she seems to have rebelled against this demanding regime and left the farm for the city life of Durban. Perhaps the demands and deprivation of the Second Boer War had been the final straw. Cornelia got a job as a cook in a children’s home and some time in 1906/07 she met the younger Wallace Hayward. He had become a barman in a Durban hotel and the couple later lived in one of the hotel rooms. On the 10 July 1908 Wallace "Wally" Henry was born, named after his father and his grandfather, Henry Hayward. Two years later a sister Agnes was born, then two years after that a brother Horace and finally a sister Gertrude. The names chosen show a great deal about the dynamics between the couple. Basically the children were named after Wallace’s siblings. None of Cornelia’s family had a child named after them. This was in the aftermath of the Anglo-Boer War which had made such a horrendous impact on the Afrikaans. Wallace’s dominance in the naming of the children, may have been a response of a victor over the vanquished, but seems at the very least, insensitive. Johannesburg When Wally was eighteen months old, the family moved to Johannesburg. Without skills, his father found it difficult to get work, and once again wound up as a barman in a hotel. Already a heavy smoker, he began drinking heavily. The Haywards had come to Johannesburg at the prompting of one of Cornelia's sisters. The Kritzingers had been involved in the Anglo-Boer War (1899-1902). Originally from Germany, three Kritzinger brothers came to South Africa in 1820 and two of them married Dutch women. A descendant, Pieter Hendrik Kritzinger, was a Boer general and guerrilla fighter during the Second Boer War. Around 1914, when Wally was six, his father got a job working in a mine, eventually becoming a mine captain at the East Rand Propriety Mines, mining gold at Boksburg, a settlement not far from Johannesburg. Wallace Hayward In 1916 Wallace enlisted in the South African Overseas Expedi...

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