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Norman Francis Callesen

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Identity

  • Title
  • Forenames
    Norman Francis AWMM
  • Surname
    Callesen AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
  • Service number
    WWII 397122 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi
  • Hapū
  • Waka
  • Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
    26 October 1921 AWMM HamiltonWaikato AWMM
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
    WW2 Pre 1943 AWMM Otaura Rd., Shannon AWMM
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    WW2 Mr. A. Callesen, P.O. Box 16, Shannon (f) AWMM
  • Relationship status

Service

Wars and conflicts

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  • War
  • Campaign
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Service number
    WWII 397122 AWMM
  • Military service
  • Promotions/ Postings/ Transfers

Military decorations

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  • Medals and Awards
    Military Medal (MM) AWMM
    13 December 1945 AWMM
    'Sergeant Callesen became platoon commander during an attack toward the SILLARO RIVER, Italy, on the night of 13-14 April 1945. His officer was killed and there were several other casualties. By rallying his men, many of whom were new and untried, by urging them forward with himself at their head and by exercise of a firm and effective control Sergeant Callesen maintained the momentum of the advance and inspired his men to a high degree of fighting skill. It was largely due to his example of personal bravery and bold leadership that the objective for the night was captured and consolidated. He remained in command of the platoon until 21 April 1945 and was its leader in two further full-scale attacks, including one of great difficulty across the Gaiana River as far west as the Quaderno River in the vicinity of Villa Fontana. On each occasion all objectives were captured and by then the confidence of the men in their leader was such that they were imbued with a fine fighting spirit. Many prisoners were taken and heavy casualties inflicted on the paratroopers opposing the advance. Sergeant Callesen frequently proved his skill and bravery in action during the fighting north of Rimini in the autumn of 1944 he took over command of a platoon while still a Private and led it forward in successful attacks. His bravery was exceptional and because of his willingness to serve over and above the demands of his duty he proved a natural leader of the men with whom he was associated.'. (Source: The National Archives. Recommendation for Award for Callesen, Norman Francis. (Ref. WO 373/14/781). Military Medal. AWMM

Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
  • Enlistment
  • Occupation before enlistment
  • Age on enlistment

Embarkations

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Prisoner of war

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

Medical history

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  • Medical notes

Last known rank

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  • Last rank

Biographical information

Biographical information

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  • Sergeant N. F. Callesen, MM; Shannon; born Hamilton, 26 Oct 1921; dairy farmer. (Source: Henderson, J. 22 Battalion. p.352.)

    'Eight Platoon, weaving up to the right of the cemetery, met with no enemy opposition and settled down on its objective about 1 a.m. without contacting the enemy. Five Platoon, taking prisoners and killing stragglers in the dark, also reached its objective. Six Platoon, however, was held up by the railway line; it was weak in numbers and had lost its officer, Wally Hart, an original member of the battalion and not long back from furlough. He had been mortally wounded while charging a spandau over the railway line. Norm Callesen, Reeve Collins and Ray Gurney picked him up and placed him on a stretcher. Hart was ‘a truly fine chap, all man, and a great soldier, we were all more than sorry to hear the news.’ Ken Hansen and Bob Ferris were wounded close by, the latter in and about an eye, which was promptly and effectively dressed by Brian Douglas and retained its sight.' (Source: Henderson, J. 22 Battalion. p. 352.) AWMM
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Death

About death

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  • Death
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference

Memorials

Memorial

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  • Memorial name

Roll of Honour

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Sources

Sources

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  • External links
    • 'The KING has been graciously pleased to approve the following awards in recognition of gallant and distinguished services in Italy.' (London Gazette, 13 December 1945, p.6079.). Military Medal.
      http://www.london-gazette.co.uk/issues/37386/supplements/6079
      Further Reference
    • 'Sergeant Callesen became platoon commander during an attack toward the SILLARO RIVER, Italy, on the night of 13-14 April 1945. His officer was killed and there were several other casualties. By rallying his men, many of whom were new and untried, by urging them forward with himself at their head and by exercise of a firm and effective control Sergeant Callesen maintained the momentum of the advance and inspired his men to a high degree of fighting skill. It was largely due to his example of personal bravery and bold leadership that the objective for the night was captured and consolidated. He remained in command of the platoon until 21 April 1945 and was its leader in two further full-scale attacks, including one of great difficulty across the Gaiana River as far west as the Quaderno River in the vicinity of Villa Fontana. On each occasion all objectives were captured and by then the confidence of the men in their leader was such that they were imbued with a fine fighting spirit. Many prisoners were taken and heavy casualties inflicted on the paratroopers opposing the advance. Sergeant Callesen frequently proved his skill and bravery in action during the fighting north of Rimini in the autumn of 1944 he took over command of a platoon while still a Private and led it forward in successful attacks. His bravery was exceptional and because of his willingness to serve over and above the demands of his duty he proved a natural leader of the men with whom he was associated.'. (Source: The National Archives. Recommendation for Award for Callesen, Norman Francis. (Ref. WO 373/14/781). Military Medal.
      http://discovery.nationalarchives.gov.uk/SearchUI/Details?uri=D7356218
      Further Reference
  • Documents
    • Henderson, J. (1958). 22 Battalion. Wellington, N.Z.: Department of Internal Affairs, War History Branch. AWMM
      pp.352, 400, 403. AWMM
    • Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force. (1945). Nominal Roll Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force No. 12 (Embarkations from 1st July, 1943 to 31st December, 1943). Wellington, N.Z.: Govt. Printer. AWMM
      p.30 AWMM