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Te Wa Moana Paenga



  • Title
  • Forenames
    Te Wa Moana AWMM
  • Surname
    Paenga AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
    Mo AWMM
  • Service number
    Vietnam 43651 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi
  • Hapū
  • Waka
  • Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
    17 March 1949 Ministry for Culture and Heritage WhangaraGisborne AWMM
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
  • Relationship status


Wars and conflicts

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  • War
  • Campaign
  • Armed force / branch
    Army AWMM
  • Service number
    Vietnam 43651 AWMM
  • Military service
  • Promotions/ Postings/ Transfers

Military decorations

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  • Medals and Awards
    New Zealand Operational Service Medal AWMM
    27 November 2003 AWMM
    Private Paenga's father, Mr Ahipene Rangi Paenga of Gisborne, received the New Zealand Operational Service Medal on his behalf from the Prime Minister and the Minister of Defence at a presentation at the Auckland War Memorial Museum. AWMM

Training and Enlistment

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  • Military training
  • Branch Trade Proficiency
  • Enlistment
  • Occupation before enlistment
  • Age on 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
    19 March 1970 AWMMKilled in Action, Cause of Death AWMM
    Shrapnel and gunshot wounds to the head during a major ambush in the bunker system at Nui Dinh Hills. This action took place in a major engagement during Operation Waiponamu. It was less than two months before the end of his tour of duty. AWMM

Biographical information

Biographical information

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  • Memorial Flag - Presented to family

    Killed in action, 19 March 1970 – shrapnel and gunshot wound to head during ambush in bunker system, Nui Dinh Hills.Mo was one of nine children who grew up Whangara, 30km north-east of Gisborne. From a farming background, he went to a farming college in Te Urewera where he met Nehe Karauria, the head shepherd from Paparatu Station. Nehe had served with W1 Company in Vietnam. It was perhaps no surprise then when Mo followed in Nehe's footsteps and went to Vietnam as a rifleman with V4 Company. On 19 March 1970, less than two months before the end of his Tour of Duty, Mo was killed in a major contact during Operation Waiponamu in the Nui Dinh Hills. Four other New Zealanders – Bill Keatch, Olly Taukamo, Beau Heke, and Tom Tuhiwai were wounded in the same action. AWMM
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About death

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  • Death
    19 March 1970 Ministry for Culture and Heritage
    Age 21 AWMM
    VietnamSoutheast Asia AWMM
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
    Taruheru Cemetery, Nelson Road, Gisborne District, New Zealand AWMM
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference



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  • Memorial name
    Auckland War Memorial Museum, Hall of Memories. Vietnam. AWMM

Roll of Honour

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  • External links
    Australia's Vietnam War
    Further Reference
  • Documents
    Subritsky, M. (Ed). (1995). The Vietnam scrapbook: The second ANZAC adventure. Papakura, N.Z.: Three Feathers Publishing Co. AWMM
The development of the Online Cenotaph is an ongoing process; updates, new images and records are added weekly. In some cases, records have yet to be confirmed by Museum staff, and there could be mistakes or omissions in the information provided.

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