Memorial Hike for Mama Julie Kempka

Memorial Hike for Mama Julie Kempka
Jörg Kempka at the beautiful Mountain Sanctuary Nature Reserve

Julianne was born in Germany and in her early twenties she married Klaus Kempka. Soon afterwards they moved to South Africa. The couple had two sons Jörg and Robert and a grandson Daniel.

Julie loved hiking in the Alps. In South Africa she continued with her hikes and walks. 

I had memorable walks with Mama Julie. The longest, was walking from Johannesburg to Pretoria. It was a 50 Km stretch and it took us the whole day! Klaus would then meet us at our destination and bring us back home. We had fun and good friend Klaus had to go through the trouble of picking us up.

Julie was talkative, she had interesting conversation and she always had good advice to share. A beautiful companion to walk the long road of life with.

Mama Julie had a keen sense of humour and she would laugh out loud. It was a contagious laughter. 

She was caring, generous and good hearted and she would go the extra mile to help – Julie was a sincere, reliable friend.

Mama Julie passed away after a short illness. She was 82 years ‘young’.. she still had much to give…

Jörg decided that it would be a fitting tribute to his Mom to have a remembrance walk at her beloved hiking place: the Mountain Sanctuary in the Magaliesberg Mountains. Over the years Jörg and Julie did some 50 hikes in this beautiful nature reserve.

Jörg invited friends Leon Wollnik, Debbie (Leon’s spouse) and I to the Memorial Hike. It was a hot day with blue skies and a cool breeze from time to time. Leon swam wherever he found crystal-clear, warm water. 

Going downhill from the camp there is a magnificent swimming pool, many trees and tables. We sat at one of the tables to enjoy Debbie’s scrumptious lunch:  100% rye bread with chicken liver pate and mustard. To drink, Debbie prepared the most delicious Rooibos tea with lemon and honey. These are recipes you will want to try.

But wait… we also had very tasty Portuguese ‘pasteis de nata’ for dessert.

It was a sad yet beautiful day. As Debbie wrote: “It was a day to remember”

Rest in Peace Mama Julie. God willing, we shall meet again… and go for long walks in Heaven.

Leon enjoying a swim in the crystal clear waters
Jorg on a protruding rock at a dizzy height
Jörg Kempka at the beautiful Mountain Sanctuary Nature Reserve
There is a time to say hello and a time to say good-bye. As my friend Ilona Burski wrote: “Loved ones who have departed, never leave us completely because they live forever in our hearts”. So true Ilona…
Jörg, Debbie and Leon (L to R). What an interesting ‘table top’ rock formation. The beautiful Buffelspoort dam in the distance.
That massive weight supported by a tiny rock underneath
We sat down for a tasty lunch in great company
We decided we were staying at a 5-star resort: Debbie was the General Manager – Food and Beverage and Jörg was the V.I.P Guest
The inviting swimming pool in the picnic area
Splendid vistas from the deck
Debbie and Leon cooling down in the hot summer’s day

Photos courtesy of Debbie and Tony.


  1. Let us not forget your long-term relationship and valued support throughout the years to mama Juliana and Jörg which has not gone unnoticed. Looking forward to hiking with you beginning February 2019.

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