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Cenotaph Stories

  • Honouring outstanding gallantry

    Victoria Passau
    Collection Manager, Online Cenotaph

    On Sunday 16 May 2021 a private ceremony was held in the World War II Hall of Memories. The ceremony marked the end of a 50-year campaign, by Norman Fry and Brian Monks, to gain recognition for their comrades.

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  • Bo Goldie - Called home to rest among his people

    Evelyn Kawiti (Ngatiporou)
    Visitor Host, Visitor Services

    Evelyn Kawiti remembers her cousin Bo Goldsmith (1950-2021) as a kind and generous man with a big heart.

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  • An Invisible History: Wāhine Māori in the Air Force during World War II

    By Stacey Fraser and Angela Wanhalla (Kāi Tahu)
    History Programme, University of Otago

    'The Style for you is Air Force Blue' was the recruitment tag-line for the New Zealand Women's Auxiliary Air Force, established on the 16th January 1941. In this article Angela Wanhalla and Stacey Fraser from University of Otago look at the formation of the WAAFs and Wāhine Māori who served in the Air Force during the Second World War, who's history has largely been invisible.

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  • Harding Waipuke Leaf

    Harding Waipuke Leaf was born on 6 October 1890 in Whirinaki, Hokianga and was of Ngāpuhi and Te Hikutu descent. Leaf served in both the First and Second World Wars.

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  • Te Rangiataahua Kiniwe Royal

    Te Rangiataahua Kiniwe Royal (Ngāti Ruakawa, Ngāti Tamaterā) fought 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.

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  • Leading the 28 Māori Battalion: Lieutenant Colonel Frederick Baker

    Lieutenant Colonel Frederick Baker could be considered an ideal soldier - skilled in strategy, he was a courageous and a “worthy commander” who led his troops with courage and mana.

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  • Harry Dansey

    Harry was nearly 40 years old when war broke out in 1914 but he nevertheless volunteered with the second draft of the Maori Contingent. Read about his wartime experiences.

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  • Wiremu Paora

    Lance Corporal Wiremu Paora (Ngāti Whātua) served in the First World War as part of the Pioneer Māori Battalion. He was injured in the battle of the Somme.

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  • Private Te Kuru and the Pioneers

    Private Te Kuru served in the "Pioneers", an important battalion which prepared battlefields for infantry and artillery. Piki carried out this dangerous work at the Western Front in the latter part of the First World War. Explore more of Piki's story.

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  • Ngāpuhi Nursing Sisters

    By Ella Johnson
    Collection Technician, Research Support

    Find out more about the Ngāpuhi Nursing Sisters, who organised themselves using the military ranks and traditions of the New Zealand Army to contribute to New Zealand's War effort during the South African War of 1899 - 1902.

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