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Muriel Isabella Moss Borthwick

  • Service number
    71989 AWMM
  • Also known as
    Muriel Isabella Moss Anderson AWMM
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Last rank
  • War
Portrait of Muriel Isabella Moss Anderson, 71989 (2014). © NZIPP Photograph by Janine Ross-Johnstone 1140-7344. CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0.

Portrait of Muriel Isabella Moss Anderson, 71989 (2014). © NZIPP Photograph by Janine Ross-Johnstone …


  • Title
  • Forenames
    Muriel Isabella Moss AWMM
  • Surname
    Borthwick AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
    Muriel Isabella Moss Anderson AWMM
  • Service number
    71989 AWMM
  • Gender
    Female AWMM
  • Iwi / Hapū / Waka / Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
    29 November 1916 WWII WAAC Roll
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
    WW2 21 Main South Road, Dunedin AWMM
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    Mrs A.I. Borthwick (mother), Dunedin, New Zealand AWMM
  • Relationship status


Wars and conflicts

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Training and Enlistment

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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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  • Member of the Redcliffes, Sumner, Papanui RSA.

    From Wishes came true for a truely nice person; "She was born on 29 November, 1916 in Otago, the only daughter of Ada Isabella and Walter Borthwick. Walter had served as a rifleman in the Otago Infantry Regiment and was wounded during World War One.

    According to her family she had a hard childhood with her parents losing their family farm during the Depression. She worked hard in a number of roles, willing to have a go at anything. She was a cleaner, a waitress and played the piano at dances.
    At the start of the war Muriel was a seamstress and began her war effort sewing neck bands on army jerseys. But she thought she could do more, so used her experience as a St John Ambulance Voluntary Aid to enrol as an army nurse in the Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps (WAAC) (Service Number 71989).

    Muriel, a keen sportswoman, had played hockey and represented Otago in cricket as a batswoman and a wicketkeeper. The Otago Women’s Cricket Association held a social evening in her honour to mark her selection in the WAAC. Her sporting interest came to the fore in Egypt where she picked up a hockey stick to play in a game between nurses and doctors.

    She embarked for overseas just before Christmas 1941 with the rank of Private Nurse and spent four years in service, including two years at the New Zealand No.1 Hospital in the Middle East before being posted to England for a few months. It was here that she had a great thrill in meeting up with her brother, Flight Sergeant Frederick Walter Alexander Borthwick. He had gained his wings in Canada and was serving in Bomber Command. Frederick survived the war, dying on 4 October 1982.7 Muriel returned to New Zealand in April 1945 and was discharged in November 1945.

    While in England Muriel worked at an internment camp in Scotland and toured both England and Scotland. Muriel’s daughter, Deni Anderson recounts that her mother worked at Buchanan Castle, near Drymen, which was used as a hospital during the war, and nursed German soldiers.

    After her stint in England, Muriel continued nursing in Italy. During this time a patient made a lead pencil on cardboard drawing of Muriel which he gave her as a thank you present which is still held in the family." AWMM
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About death

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  • Death
    27 November 2017 AWMM
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference



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  • Memorial name

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Related Serviceperson



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  • External links
  • References
    • Service Women Project: Sponsorship to research this record was kindly provided by the Auckland Returned Services Association, Returned Servicewomen's Branch; Marjorie Traill, Dorothy Grant, Daphne Shaw and Margaret Woollett. AWMM
    • Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force. (1942). Nominal Roll Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force No. 6 (Embarkations from 1st October, 1941 to 31st December, 1941). Wellington, N.Z.: Govt. Printer. AWMM
      p.6 AWMM
    • This record was partially compiled from information provided by the New Zealand Institute of Professional Photographers (NZIPP) Veteran Portrait Project. AWMM
    • WAAC [Women's Auxiliary Army Corps] - Lists - Overseas Information [including Strength Returns and Embarkation Rolls] (1943 - 1945) - Archives New Zealand, Wellington, (R22502074) AWMM


Command item
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DateFirst namesLocationRelationshipContact
24 April 2017Denise JoanRotorua, New ZealandChild

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