Hendrik Coetzee

Hendrik "Hendri" Coetzee (c. 1975 – 7 December 2010) was a South African outdoorsman and author.[4][5] He was killed after being taken by a crocodile in December 2010.[4][6]

Hendrik Coetzee
Hendrik Coetzee

c. 1975
Ottosdal, South Africa[1]
Disappeared(2010-12-07)7 December 2010
Lukuga River,
Democratic Republic of the Congo
StatusMissing presumed dead
Cause of deathTaken by crocodile
NationalitySouth African
Other namesHendri Coetzee
OccupationAdventurer, tour leader
EmployerKayak the Nile[2]
TelevisionThe Longest River[3]

Coetzee gained prominence in 2004 leading a Nile River source-to-sea expedition, following in the path of John Goddard's expedition.[7][8][9][10] The expedition set off from Lake Victoria in Uganda on 17 January, reaching Khartoum on 25 March[11] and the Mediterranean Sea at Rosetta on 21 May.[12] The purpose of the trip was to draw attention to the humanitarian situation in the region in partnership with CARE.[13] Following claims that the expedition had not begun from the true source of the Nile, Coetzee's party undertook a further journey from Kagera to Lake Victoria in April 2005, adding 750 km to the 6700 km they completed in 2004.[14]

Coetzee was leader of an expedition going from the source of the White Nile into the Congo at the time of the attack. The trip was the first-of-its-kind kayaking expedition from the White Nile and Congo rivers into the Congo to explore the Ruzizi and Lualaba Rivers. The two other men on the trip, Americans and also experienced kayakers, were documenting unexplored whitewater and development projects in the region.[4][15]

A memorial service for Coetzee was held on 28 January 2011.[1]

The documentary short film Kadoma about Coetzee was released in 2011.[16]


  1. ^ a b Gerretson, Bronwyn (10 December 2010). "Killed after his 'best day ever'". iol.co.za. Retrieved 29 November 2021.
  2. ^ "Who we are - Kayak the Nile.com". kayakthenile.com. 2010. Retrieved 12 December 2010.
  3. ^ Zumerchik, John; Danver, Steven Laurence (2010). Seas and waterways of the world. ISBN 9781851097111.
  4. ^ a b c Gross, Jenny (9 December 2010). "Kayaker Presumed Dead After Congo Crocodile Attack". aolnews.com. Archived from the original on 12 December 2010.
  5. ^ Rich (9 December 2010). "Northwest kayakers with guide killed by crocodile". spokesman.com.
  6. ^ "Famed Outdoorsman Hendrik Coetzee in Croc Attack". cbsnews.com. 9 December 2010. Archived from the original on 16 March 2010.
  7. ^ John Goddard
  8. ^ Goddard, John (1979). Kayaks down the Nile. Brigham Young University Press
  9. ^ "River guide believed killed by crocodile in Congo". cnn.com. 10 December 2010.
  10. ^ Adventure Lab (8 December 2010). "On the Death of Hendri Coetzee". outside-blog.away.com.
  11. ^ Mutumba, Richard (25 March 2004). "Nile Expedition Arrives in Khartoum". allafrica.com.
  12. ^ Jasper Mortimer (21 May 2004). "Rafters complete Nile journey". news24.com.
  13. ^ "South Africans join Nile team". news24.com. 31 January 2004.
  14. ^ "Rafters epic journey reopens debate on true source of the Nile". nzherald.co.nz. 2 May 2005. Retrieved 12 December 2010.
  15. ^ The Economist, "Hendrik Coetzee", 1 January 2010, p. 78.
  16. ^ Schnell, Caramie (2 June 2011). "Epics are born". vaildaily.com. Retrieved 13 October 2011.

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