From Soup to Nuts – a Memoir by Nigel Henson
From Soup to Nuts
A lifetime in a book … from schooling in Rhodesia to fighting as the country’s longest serving Fire – Force Commander during the bush-war of the 1970’s
Nigel Henson was born in Bulawayo, Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) in 1946, and educated at Plumtree School. He was awarded the Sword of Honour at the School of Infantry and was commissioned into the Rhodesian Light Infantry, serving as a troop commander in the Bush War of the 1970s.He moved to the Middle East to join the Sultan of Oman’s Armed Forces as a company commander in Dhofar in1968/9 at the age of 21, before returning to the RLI as a training officer, rising to staff officer in army headquarters.
In May 1977, Major Nigel Henson took command of the Support Commando engaged in Fire-Force operations, most of which he commanded from the air and involved parachuting into Mozambique and Zambia.
In early 1980, Henson, along with other officers and soldiers, was decorated at Army Headquarters Salisbury after the Commonwealth Monitoring Force had arrived. Now retired, Nigel lives in Gauteng. He relishes his fly-fishing, his lovof fine whiskeys, and the occasional poor game of golf.
‘‘…Major Henson has acted as the airborne controller and has been subjected to considerable ground fire from the enemy. In spite of this, Major Henson’s tactical handling of his troops
on the ground, and his determined leadership have been of the highest order...’’ – Legion of Merit: Military” (OLM) awarded at Special Awards Ceremony: April 1980
I have just finished reading the book titled ‘From Soup to Nuts written by Nigel Henson. I thoughrally enjoyed reading all his stories, it took me back to those wonderful years in my own past. His description of Umtali, where I spent a lot of my young life, was spot on. It brought so many memories back for me,some awesome and some sad but always full of hope. Unlike many other war books available which tend to focus on the horrors of war which we are fully aware of, he has a way of weaving the often lighthearted and humorous tales which, to me, are an important part of our past. He included those and that really bought the book to life for me! He describes the various types of scenery and terrain which was brilliant, I felt like I was right there along side of him. I loved the book from cover to cover, I struggled to put it down! I highly recommend his memoir, a ‘must read’ for all!