Son of William and Pihitahi Wharetuna Trainor, of Ruatoki, Auckland, New Zealand
Name appears as Tahae in Nominal Rolls, as Tahal in Commonwealth War Graves and NZETC
Reference to death of this soldier in Cecil Coughlan (ed. Garrie Coughlan) Diary of a Kiwi Soldier in World War II.
Sergeant T. Trainor, MM; born Ruatoki, 15 Feb 1919; carpenter; died of wounds 24 May 1944. (Source: Cody, J.F. 28 Maori Battalion. p.296.)
'In the meantime the CO, determined to straighten his line, had returned to B Company to accelerate its advance—all contact with A Company had long been lost—and found it still under very heavy fire from the slopes of Takrouna. He sent back instructions to the three three tanks attached to the battalion to turn their guns on Takrouna and ordered Captain Sorensen to leave a party of men with automatics to engage the enemy while the others pushed on and linked up with C Company. Colonel Bennett then left again for C Company to co-ordinate the movements of the two companies but, accepting the risk of stepping over a trip-wire, he exploded a wooden box mine and was severely wounded.
Captain Sorensen got his men another 300 yards around the south-eastern toe of Takrouna before he was wounded and Lieutenant E. Morgan took command, with 10 Platoon commanded by Sergeant J. Rogers, Platoon by Second-Lieutenant Anaru, and 12 Platoon by Sergeant Trainor. Originally 10 Platoon was to have detailed two sections to make the feint attack on the south face of Takrouna and Rogers left with all the men he could muster to carry out the task.
It was now about 2 a.m., the objective over half a mile away, and the barrage for Phase I was completed. B Company made another start and when, soon afterwards, Lieutenant Morgan was wounded, the two sergeants carried on independently. No. 11 Platoon, farthest from Takrouna, missed C Company and reached the road under fire from high ground ahead. Sergeant Trainor could muster only nine men and in front of him were machine guns covering two 75-millimetre guns. He led his party straight at the pocket, silencing the guns and taking twenty-seven Germans prisoner. He was awarded an MM for the exploit. Half an hour later 12 Platoon was also up to the road. Sergeant T. Trainor, MM; born Ruatoki, 15 Feb 1919; carpenter; died of wounds 24 May 1944.; Bardia to Enfidaville - And meanwhile the OC and one platoon commander in B Company had been wounded while the company was pushing on another 300 yards round the toe of Takrouna. No. 10 Platoon was left behind under its commander, Sergeant Rogers,1 to make the feint attack up the southern slopes, while the platoon commander, Lieutenant Morgan, now acting as company commander, went on with 11 and 12 Platoons. He was soon himself wounded. Nevertheless the two platoons went on edging ahead along the eastern slopes, and from 11 Platoon two sections managed to reach the road after a difficult advance through intense fire. In one section only one man had survived. When 12 Platoon began the last phase of its advance it had only nine men under Sergeant Trainor. Enemy machine-gun posts covering two 75-millimetre anti-tank guns were discovered and promptly attacked and captured, together with twenty-seven prisoners, all German. No. 12 Platoon then reached the road, the time being about 2.30 a.m. A grim persistence had put these gallant few on their objective, even though they were two hours behind the artillery programme, which very obviously was far too ambitious in its timings. Sergeant T. Trainor, MM; born Ruatoki, 15 Feb 1919; carpenter; died of wounds 24 May 1944.
' (Source: Cody, J.F. 28 Maori Battalion. p. 296.; Stevens, W.G. Bardia to Enfidaville. p. 318.) AWMM