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Chanel James McCalman

Portrait, Weekly News - This image may be subject to copyright

Portrait, Weekly News - This image may be subject to copyright


  • Title
  • Forenames
    Chanel James AWMM
  • Surname
    McCalman AWMM
  • Ingoa
  • Also known as
    Mac AWMM
  • Service number
    WWII 463443 AWMM
  • Gender
    Male AWMM
  • Iwi
  • Hapū
  • Waka
  • Rohe
  • Religion

Civilian life

About birth

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  • Birth
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Birth notes
  • Address before enlistment
    WW2 141 Queens Drive, Lyall Bay, Wellington, New Zealand AWMM
  • Post war occupation
  • Next of kin on embarkation
    • WW2 Mrs E. McCalman (wife), 25 Monro Street, Seatoun, Wellington, New Zealand AWMM
    • Mrs E. McCalman
      (Eileen) Public - Rachel Mary - Other Relative - 19 April 2015 - I think the R initial is simply a typo - instead of E - as Eileen's name in documented correctly in another part of record. I thought it was right to correct this small error in the record though. Eileen and Chanel were my grandparents.
  • Relationship status
    Married AWMM


Wars and conflicts

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Military decorations

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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
    Killed in Action, Cause of Death AWMM

Last known rank

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Biographical information

Biographical information

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  • Chanel McCalman was the son of Frank and Margaret Jane McCalman; husband of Eileen McCalman, of Seatoun, Wellington, New Zealand

    "I don't know how many people know we had a full Pakeha fighting with us in Italy. He was Lance-Corporal C.J. McCalman - 'Mac' as he was called by all - who joined us during the Sangro action.

    He actually belonged to 27 Battalion, but was frustrated by the fact that it saw very little real action - so he went AWOL (absent without leave), joined 28 Battalion and saw action with B company at Sangro and Orsogna.

    To avoid him being charged as AWOL or as a deserter, Monty Wikiriwhi applied to have him transferred to the battalion and this was duly done.

    Mac soon became very adept at Homai and other hand games and could out-cheat most of us. He was built like a front row All-Black, and going into action was always loaded down like a pack-horse - food, ammunition, weapons, cooking utensils, you name it, Mac carried it!

    He always carried a 'Benghazi burner' and base, a billy and pot for tea and fowls, and a frying pan for pancakes. You can imagine the clanking of this collection going into action! But we only had to stop for a few minutes and Mac had a cup of tea ready, a chook on the boil, and his masterpeice pikelets.

    He always had a supply of flour, egg powder, milk powder, a tin of fruit salts (in lieu of baking powder) and a tin of butter, and - given sufficient time - the platoon would soon be sitting down to hot pikelets covered in butter and jam and a cup of hot tea.

    On our long marches and going into battle, you would find Mac carrying not only his own heavy load but also packs or heavy weapons belonging to some of the smaller members of the platoon.

    A wonderful mate and soldier, respected by all who knew him, Mac served with the battalion from the Sangro to the final stages of the advance on Florence. On August 1, 1944, he and several other members of his platoon received a direct hit and were killed." - Aubrey Balzer (275754), War Time Memories, N.Z.R.S.A AWMM
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About death

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  • Death
    1 August 1944 AWMM
    Age 29 AWMM
    FlorenceItaly AWMM
  • Date of death
  • Age at death
  • Place of death
  • Cause of death
  • Death notes
  • Cemetery
    Florence War Cemetery, Italy AWMM VII. B. 5. AWMM
  • Cemetery name
  • Grave reference
  • Obituary
  • Memorial name
  • Memorial reference



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  • Memorial name

Roll of Honour

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  • Chanel is my great grandfather. I have heard amazing things about him. I am very proud of him and I hope he’s happy in heaven.
    Public - Aoibheann - Direct descendant - 14 April 2021
  • Chanel's brother, Aubert Patrick McCalman (Pat) and family were our farming neighbours at Ratana Pa in the 60s/70s. Pat and Irene had 3 children. I remember Athalie on her horse, Nigel once threw a mud pie at me and Joe was the other.
    When Irene moved to Wanganui after Pat died, we visited her and Nigel. Nigel had joined the Navy.
    Public - Sally - 9 April 2018
  • I have found a photo of Chanel James McCalman's grave in Florence with the original white cross amongst my late father's WW II papers etc. His name is spelt wrong but tracked him down though his service number. Dad was in 27 Battalion and has many photos from the Italian campaign, some well labelled, which I hope I can return to families. Have sent a message to his son John via this page about this photograph.
    Public - Linda - 12 June 2016
  • he is my great great uncel i reacherch him at school he is so brave im proud to have him in my fam
    Public - Elliot - Other relative - 8 June 2016
  • Chanel McCalman was my uncle on my mother's side. His sister - my mother - was Kathleen Mary Rose McCalman who became Kathleen Barnden on marriage. I love this story about uncle Chanel as it's one of very few stories I know about my mother's siblings. My own eldest grandson is currently doing a school assignment and has chosen to retell the story of his great great uncle.
    Public - Sharon - Other relative - 22 October 2015
  • I am Chanel's granddaughter (John's daughter). He is buried at the Commonwealth war cemetery in Florence which I have had the honour of visiting. Remembering him & his brothers on Anzac day and always....
    Public - Rachel - Other Relative - 23 April 2015
  • I am one of Chanel's 2 children, John Bernard McCalman. My older sister was Patricia Ann (deceased). Don't be confused, I am just named after the John Bernard McCalman (Joe) who was also killed in action in WW2. Great to see other family remembering him.
    Public - John Bernard - Child - 22 April 2015
  • Mac was my Grandmother, Edith Margaret Hutchins younger brother, she lost another brother, Joe and a son, Terry during the war also. She had another two boys both of who served during the war, one of whom, my uncle Don also fought in Italy. Happily he is still alive and keeps good health. We do all we can to keep the memory of these brave men alive in the family. I would love to hear from more of Macs relations
    Public - Bruce - Other Relative - 21 April 2015
  • Chanel was my great uncle. His brother was Aubert Patrick McCalman my Grandfather. They were very close as brothers from what my mum Athalie tells me. Always remembered.
    Public - Antoinette - Other Relative - 12 April 2015
  • Chanel McCalman (Mac) was my great uncle. His nephew Earl McCalman was my grandfather and he died a few years ago. Apparently I've inherited Mac's love of pikelets.
    Public - Zoe Paige - Other Relative - 12 March 2015
  • Chanel is my Great Uncle, he lost his Brother John Bernard Mccalman in greece early in the war,
    Public - marion - Other Relative - 13 February 2015



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  • External links
  • References
    • Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force. (1945). Nominal Roll Second New Zealand Expeditionary Force No. 11 (Embarkations from 1st April, 1943 to 30th June, 1943). Wellington, N.Z.: Govt. Printer. AWMM
      WW2 11: WW2 79 AWMM
    • Gardiner, W. (2019). Ake ake kia kaha e! : Forever brave! : B Company 28 (Maori) Battalion, 1939-1945. Auckland : Bateman Books. AWMM
    • Cody, J. (1956). 28 (Maori) Battalion. Wellington, N.Z.: Department of Internal Affairs, War History Branch. AWMM
    • Kay, R. (1958). 27 (Machine Gun) Battalion. Wellington, N.Z.: Department of Internal Affairs, War History Branch. AWMM


Command item
Command item
Add new record Refresh
DateFirst namesLocationRelationshipContact
10 December 2021Ian Banks Taumarunui New ZealandResearcher
14 April 2021AoibheannNew Plymouth Direct descendant
09 April 2018SallyLondon, UKOther
12 June 2016LindaLevinOther
08 June 2016ElliotwellingtonOther relative

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