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Online Cenotaph

Te Rangi Royal

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  • Service number
    • 19654 AWMM
    • 5096 AWMM
  • Also known as
    • Te Rangiataahua Kiniwe AWMM
    • Roera AWMM
    • Te Rangi Atahua Kiniwe AWMM
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Last rank
    • WW1 Lieutenant/Military AWMM
      New Zealand (Maori) Pioneer Battalion AWMM
    • WW2 Major/Military AWMM
      28 (Maori) Battalion AWMM
  • War
    • World War I, 1914-1918 AWMM
    • World War II, 1939-1945 AWMM
Portrait of Te Rangiataahua Kiniwe Royal in military uniform. In memoriam card for "Te Rangi Atahua Kiniwe Royal, O.B.E., M.C. and Bar. First controller of Maori welfare. Born: 5/11/1892 - Died: 8/7/1965". Auckland War Memorial Museum - Tamaki Paenga Hira (EPH-MAO-22-1). This image may be subject to copyright.
Portrait of Te Rangiataahua Kiniwe Royal in military uniform … Read more

Identity

  • Title
  • Forenames
    Te Rangi AWMM
  • Surname
    Royal AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
    • Te Rangiataahua Kiniwe AWMM
    • Roera AWMM
    • Te Rangi Atahua Kiniwe AWMM
  • Service number
    • 19654 AWMM
    • 5096 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi
    • Ngāti Raukawa AWMM
    • Ngāti Tamaterā AWMM
  • Hapū
  • Waka
  • Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Date of birth
    23 August 1897 AWMM
  • Place of birth
    Levin, Manawatu-Wanganui, New Zealand AWMM
  • Birth notes
    Possibly born on the 3rd August 1896 (Military Personnel File) AWMM
  • Occupation before enlistment
    • WW1 Clerk AWMM
      Unknown military district AWMM
    • WW2 Civil servant/Civilian AWMM
  • Post war occupation
    • Civil servant/Civilian AWMM
    • Controller Maori Welfare/Civilian AWMM
  • Address before enlistment
    • Unknown Unknown address AWMM
    • Unknown 38 Grey Street, Rotorua, New Zealand AWMM
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    • Mrs Keriati Kiniwe Royal (mother), Paeroa, New Zealand AWMM
    • Mrs P. Royal (wife), 38 Grey Street, Rotorua, New Zealand AWMM
  • Relationship status
    • Pre 31 Dec 1917 Single AWMM
    • Pre 02 May 1940 Married AWMM
      Married to Te Puhi o Rakaiora Taiaroa AWMM

Service

Wars and conflicts

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  • War
    • World War I, 1914-1918 AWMM
    • World War II, 1939-1945 AWMM
  • Campaign
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Service number
    • 19654 AWMM
    • 5096 AWMM
  • Military service
  • Promotions/ Postings/ Transfers

Military decorations

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  • Medals and Awards
    • Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) AWMM
      1964 AWMM
    • Military Cross and bar (MC*) AWMM
      19 March 1942 AWMM
      The National Archives. Recommendation for Award for Royal, Rangi. (Ref. WO 373/27/425). Bar to Military Cross. AWMM
    • Military Cross (MC) AWMM
      30 December 1941 AWMM
      The National Archives. Recommendation for Award for Royal, Rangi. (Ref. WO 373/27/425). Military Cross. MC. Leading a bold charge against German paratroopers at Suda Bay, Crete. Bar, MC. Libyan campaign. AWMM

Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
  • Enlistment
    • WW1 Unknown AWMM
    • WW2 Rotorua, Bay of Plenty, New Zealand AWMM
  • Age on enlistment

    Embarkations

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    • Embarkation details
      • WW1 31 Dec 1917-25 February 1918 AWMM from Wellington, New Zealand AWMM to Glasgow, Scotland AWMM HMNZT 99 AWMM
        Vessel was Athenic AWMM
        Company Sergeant Major/Military AWMM
        25th Reinforcements, Maori Contingent AWMM
        New Zealand Expeditionary Force AWMM
      • WW2 Vessel was Aquitania AWMM
        Captain/Military AWMM
        28 (Maori) Battalion AWMM
        Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force, Second Echelon AWMM

    Prisoner of war

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    • Capture details
    • Days interned
    • Liberation date
    • POW liberation details
    • POW serial number

    Medical history

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    • Medical notes
      Hospital Diseases , Wounds, WWII AWMM
      Wounded 14 December 1941 AWMM

    Last known rank

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    • Last rank
      • WW1 Lieutenant/Military AWMM
        New Zealand (Maori) Pioneer Battalion AWMM
      • WW2 Major/Military AWMM
        28 (Maori) Battalion AWMM

    Biographical information

    Biographical information

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    • Te Rangiataahua Kiniwe Royal (Ngāti Ruakawa, Ngāti Tamaterā) served in both the First and Second World Wars. He was Major in command of the 28th Māori Battalion's B Company when he was injured near Gazala in Libya.

      Te Rangiataahua was born on 23 August 1896 at Muhunoa, Ohau. He spent his early life in the Horowhenua and Thames districts, later joining the Native Department in 1916. He enlisted in the Army in 1917 - serving in France for eight months before returning home.

      After the war, Te Rangiataahua continued his work with the Native Department and was a clerk in the Native Land Court. He was a very successful sportsman during the interwar years - representing his province in cricket and rugby.

      In 1940, Te Rangiataahua enlisted as Captain in the 28th Māori Battalion, part of the 2nd New Zealand Division who fought in the Second World War. After training at Palmerston North, the Battalion travelled by train to Wellington to board the Aquitania for Britain. Soon after daybreak on 2 May the Aquitania departed. Cody (1956) describes the scene:

      "With nearly three thousand troops plus a detachment of the RNVR on board, [the ship] moved out into the stream. The Maori Battalion's last close contact with its own people was the sight of the crowd allowed on the wharf and the sound of the Ngati Poneke girls singing farewell songs as the distance widened between ship and shore. The Battalion sang its farewell song 'Po Atarau' in reply."
      The ship travelled in convoy with the Empress of Britain and the Empress of Japan, travelling around Africa to avoid potential conflict. Once they reached the Irish sea they were escorted by HMS Hood, an aircraft carrier and six destroyers and reached Glasgow on 16 June. After six months training in England, the Battalion sailed back around Africa, arriving in Egypt on 3 March 1941.

      After battles in Greece and Crete, the 28th Māori Battalion joined the rest of the New Zealand Division in the campaign in Libya. Te Rangiataahua was wounded in the advance to Gazala. Wira Gardiner (1992) outlines the events that led up to the battle.

      "On 10 December 1941, the Maori [Battalion] were on the move westwards past Menastir, the scene of their recent triumph, and on toward Gazala. 5th Brigade was to move west towards Gazala but not get involved in serious fighting. Seventeen miles west of Tobruk, the battalions were given their tasks. 23rd Battalion was to move down the main coastal road. The Maori were to move along a track on the escarpment overlooking the coast road. 22nd Battalion moved further south.

      The 28th (Maori) Battalion's first objective was Sidi Mgherreb, 'a slight rise dominated by a little hill hardly more than a pimple on the desert'. It was a very strong position, protected by a minefield on its left flank and by a line of 26 anti-tank guns, interlaced with machine guns and mortars on its right."

      Using simple, if unorthodox, tactics the Battalion was successful and took over 1000 prisoners. Two days later and 12 km further west, the 28th Battalion was in action again, this time the objective was Point 181. The assault (as recorded by Cody) was a replica of the first.

      "Colonel Dyer placed Captain Royal in charge with orders to consolidate while he returned to his headquarters back on the first objective. Royal in turn instructed A Company and 17 Platoon to consolidate while he went forward with B Company to exploit in case there were more enemy about. They found a field ambulance, medical stores, a food truck, a car and several motor cycles. The Arawas had taken time off to sample the Italian hot coffee in the food truck when the approach of daylight disclosed still more enemy in trenches close by.
      They did not offer much opposition and the Maoris [sic] took over their weapon pits. B Company's adventures were not yet over for at first light another enemy group was seen about 400 yards away, apparently standing around waiting to surrender. The Maoris [sic] were proceeding to oblige them when the enemy suddenly turned and manned some guns behind them, whereupon B Company's men dived for the cover they had just left.

      By the greatest of good fortune a Vickers crew had arrived by this time and came immediately into action cleaning up the enemy gun crews, breaking up an incipient counter-attack, and ensuring that the guns remained unmanned. Captain Royal and Lieutenant D Stewart were wounded by the same mortar shell and Lieutenant F T Bennett took command."

      After recovering in hospital, Te Rangiataahua returned home to New Zealand. He was appointed Chief Welfare Officer, becoming the controller of Māori welfare in 1946. He was involved in many Māori development initiatives - playing a significant role in the development and implementation of the Māori Social and Economic Advancement Act 1945. Royal & Jamison (2014) describe him as "influential in pursuing tribal self-determination through the establishment of some 500 tribal committees formed to consider issues related to education, health and employment".

      Retiring from working life in 1956, Te Rangiataahua received an OBE in 1964. He died on 8 July 1965 and is buried in Muruika Soldiers' Cemetery, Ohinemutu. AWMM
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    Death

    About death

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    • Age at death
      68 AWMM
    • Date of death
      8 July 1965 AWMM
    • Cause of death
    • Place of death
      Rotorua, Bay of Plenty, New Zealand AWMM
    • Death notes
    • Cemetery name
      Ohinemutu Cemetery, Rotorua, New Zealand AWMM
    • Grave reference
    • Memorial name
    • Memorial reference
    • Obituary

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    Sources

    Sources

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