Tag Archives: World War II

Tom Pritchard, New Zealand’s Oldest Cricketer

Tom Pritchard, New Zealand’s Oldest Cricketer

“Tom Pritchard, New Zealand’s oldest cricketer, has died aged 100 at his home in New Zealand,” as reported in an article on Cricbuzz. “Pritchard, who played a total of 200 first-class matches and…

After WWII NZ Navy Rocked With Peaceful Mutinies

After WWII NZ Navy Rocked With Peaceful Mutinies

As far as navies go, the Royal New Zealand Navy is a relatively young one. For most of New Zealand’s time as a British colony, the country was protected by the British Navy. It…

Decorated WWII Fighter Pilot Keith Thiele

Decorated WWII Fighter Pilot Keith Thiele

Squadron Leader Keith Thiele, who has died in Sydney aged 94, was decorated four times as a bomber and a fighter pilot and was one of only four New Zealand-born airmen to earn three…

Precious Life Preserved on Ward 3

Precious Life Preserved on Ward 3

The beginnings of plastic surgery during World War II and pioneer New Zealand-born Archie McIndoe’s work with the Guinea Pig Club at Queen Victoria Hospital are related in an excerpt taken from Extreme Medicine: How…

Peter Jackson and Paul Allen Dogfight over Warbirds

Peter Jackson and Paul Allen Dogfight over Warbirds

Filmmaker Peter Jackson, who has amassed more than 40 flyable World War I warbirds – the planet’s largest collection – and Microsoft Corp. billionaire Paul Allen are vying to build the world’s best fighter…

Building the Auckland Harbour Bridge

Building the Auckland Harbour Bridge

Take a look at a video posted by The New Zealand Herald about the building of the Auckland Harbour Bridge in the 50’s. Around 180 skilled workmen were brought…

Richard Burton Couldn’t Beat George Silk on a Photo Call

Richard Burton Couldn’t Beat George Silk on a Photo Call

In 1993, New Zealand-born LIFE photojournalist George Silk was asked by American photographer John Loengard if in his long career, Silk had been “willing to pose pictures.” Silk’s reply is worth setting down here in…

Tribute to Nancy Wake

Tribute to Nancy Wake

Watch a Tribute to a World War Two heroine and French Resistance fighter, Nancy Wake. Nancy Grace Augusta Wake served as a British agent during the later part of…

How World War Changed Women’s Fashion

How World War Changed Women’s Fashion

An exhibition called The Way We Wore – In Service and On The Street, which has begun online at the New Zealand Fashion Museum, is one of many such exhibits on now throughout…

Princess Anne Unveils Archie McIndoe Statue

Princess Anne Unveils Archie McIndoe Statue

A bronze statue of plastic surgeon pioneer, New Zealander Sir Archibald McIndoe, has been unveiled by Princess Anne in East Grinstead, West Sussex, a short drive from Queen Victoria Hospital where he made his…

One Summer This Fearless Man Drove off the Luftwaffe

One Summer This Fearless Man Drove off the Luftwaffe

Keith Park was one of the great heroes of World War II, yet years later, when Peter Robb came across the laconic New Zealander, his contributions had still to be truly recognised. Robb recalls…

Centenarian Joins Sydney Reunion of WW2 Veterans

Centenarian Joins Sydney Reunion of WW2 Veterans

New Zealand World War II veteran Frank Harlow, 100, joined fellow New Zealanders living in Australia at their first ever reunion at the Sydney Maori Anglican Fellowship Church of Te Wairua Tapu in Redfern,…

McIndoe Sculpture Unveiled

McIndoe Sculpture Unveiled

The design for a memorial honouring pioneering plastic surgeon, Dunedin-born Sir Archibald McIndoe, the hundreds of Second World War air crew whom he rescued from despair, and the town of East Grinstead crucial in…

Wave To End The War

Wave To End The War

During the Second World War, New Zealand and the United States conducted secret tests of a “tsunami bomb” designed to destroy coastal cities by using underwater blasts to trigger massive tidal waves. The tests…

Reuniting Families with Sons

Reuniting Families with Sons

Bronte artist Darryl Robertson has dedicated the past few years to helping the Dutch town of Markelo track down the families of three RAF airmen who were killed when their bomber, one of three…

Veterans Remember their Friends

Veterans Remember their Friends

New Zealand World War II airmen were among 800 veterans present at Green Park, London for the Queen’s unveiling of a memorial sculpted by Scotsman Philip Jackson. New Zealand paid for 39 veterans, aged…

Unsung Hero of Buchenwald

Unsung Hero of Buchenwald

Napier-born Squadron Leader Phil Lamason, who has died aged 93, was the leader of a group of Allied airmen sent to Buchenwald concentration camp by the Gestapo. Lamason worked in the Hawkes Bay as…

Auckland’s Movie Coup

Auckland’s Movie Coup

Filming begins in Auckland on Hollywood blockbuster, WWII political-thriller Emperor this month at Henderson’s Auckland Film Studios. Lost heartthrob Matthew Fox, 45, stars. Inspired by true events, Emperor is an epic story of love and understanding set amidst the uncertainties…

Back to the Island of Crete

Back to the Island of Crete

No guns were firing when the New Zealand Herald’s Jim Eagles assembled quietly at the bottom of the steep road to the hilltop village of Galatas on the storied island of Crete. “Seventy years…

Farewell to the White Mouse

Farewell to the White Mouse

New Zealand heroine and NZEdge hero Nancy Wake has passed away in England, three weeks shy of her 99th birthday. Born in Wellington in 1912, Wake moved to Australia with…

Return to Kapiti

Return to Kapiti

Sixty-nine years after he survived a fatal landing exercise off Paekakariki Beach, former marine American Frank Zalot plans to travel to New Zealand in 212 for a commemoration of American servicemen stationed here in…

Ace Pilot and Farmer

Ace Pilot and Farmer

Former Sergeant-Pilot Geoffrey Bryson Fisken, the British Commonwealth’s No. 1 fighter pilot in the Pacific during WW2, has died at age 96 in Rotorua. He had spent much of his postwar years as a…

Old Market Memories

Old Market Memories

New Zealand-born Percy Roche, who owned one of the first shops at Omaha’s Old Market shopping district in Nebraska and who is even credited for naming the area, has died in Nelson, aged 88….

Atom Spy Claims

Atom Spy Claims

New Zealand-born DNA pioneer and Nobel Prize recipient Professor Maurice Wilkins was investigated by MI5 as a possible atom spy who had passed US nuclear secrets to the Russians. Security service files recently released…

WW2 Pilot Laid to Rest

WW2 Pilot Laid to Rest

The puzzle of New Zealand pilot officer W. Stuart Beattie who was killed 69 years ago has finally been laid to rest. Torquay Royal British Legion secretary Ena Pethick turned supersleuth to find out…

The Great Escapee

The Great Escapee

The last living New Zealander involved in The Great Escape of World War II has died in Masterton aged 92. Mick Shand was an RAF fighter pilot who fought in the Battle…

Professional Outsider Remembered

Professional Outsider Remembered

World renowned mathematician and nuclear fusion sceptic Leslie Woods has died aged 84. Born in Reparoa, a tiny settlement between Rotorua and Taupo, Woods was the first student of Seddon Memorial Technical College to…

Te Kuiti Hero Immortalised in Bronze

Te Kuiti Hero Immortalised in Bronze

A statue commemorating a NZ WW2 hero has been unveiled in the Scottish village of Cowie, where he died. Flight Lieutenant Carlisle Everiss of Te Kuiti lost control of his Spitfire over Cowie in…

Images from the Outskirts of War

Images from the Outskirts of War

James Boswell: Unofficial War Artist: Drawings of Army Life in Iraq and UK 1939-1943 by William Feaver offers a fascinating insight into the “unpretentious, unheroic, unsmarmy” work of the NZ-born artist and political activist….

Another Classic Set for Edge Treatment

Another Classic Set for Edge Treatment

Peter Jackson is heading a big budget remake of classic British war film, The Dam Busters. Jackson will produce the movie, with fellow Kiwi and long time collaborator, Christian Rivers, making his directing…

Badge of Gold for Nancy Wake

Badge of Gold for Nancy Wake

Wellington-born Nancy Wake, 94, now living in a London rest home, has been awarded the NZ Returned Services Association’s highest honour, the RSA Badge in Gold, as well as life membership for her work…

Battle of Britain Hero

Battle of Britain Hero

Group Captain Edward Preston “Hawkeye” Wells, one of the RAF’s most outstanding WWII pilots has died at the age of 89. Born in Cambridge (NZ) on 26 July 1916 and educated at Cambridge High School, Wells was called…

Rugby Stalwart Farewelled

Rugby Stalwart Farewelled

Former All Black captain, agricultural economist, and leading NZRU administrator – Bob Stuart, OBE – died in May aged 84. Although Stuart’s best playing years were taken up by military service during WW2, he successfully lead NZ…

The Wonders of Technology

The Wonders of Technology

77-year-old Aroha Pearless used the internet to track down her first crush, a US marine stationed in NZ during WW2. Pearless had found photos of her former flame, Carl Leary, while cleaning out an old album. Remembering…

Epic Moments Remembered

Epic Moments Remembered

The world commemorated the 60th anniversary of D-Day on June 6, with war veterans and international leaders (including PM Helen Clark) gathering in France to pay their respects. NZ lost more soldiers proportionately than any other country…

Belated Honour for White Mouse

Belated Honour for White Mouse

Nancy Wake, the most decorated female veteran of WW2, was made a Companion of the Order of Australia on March 3. Born in NZ and raised in Australia, Wake was a leading figure in the French…

Face Maker Brought to Screen

Face Maker Brought to Screen

The pioneering methods used by NZ facial surgeon, Sir Archibald McIndoe, and his Canadian partner, Dr Ross Tilley, during WW2 are the inspiration behind a new Canadian documentary, The Guinea Pig Club. McIndoe and Tilley used radical…

A Life Lived by the Sea

A Life Lived by the Sea

NZ-born WW2 hero, Sir William Crawford, has died in England aged 95. Crawford was gunnery officer and lieutenant-commander aboard the Rodney during the sinking of Germany’s great battleship, the Bismarck. His distinguished naval career also saw him…

Waking Up the Establishment

Waking Up the Establishment

Nancy Wake, NZ-born heroine of the WW2 resistance movement, interviewed in SMH, recovering after a heart attack in hospital. At 90 Wake has become an honoured permanent resident and “something of a tourist attraction” at the…

Independent Film in the Wars

Independent Film in the Wars

An independent British film telling the story of a New Zealand WW2 hero has ignited a “trans-Atlantic row over Hollywood movie muscle.” Two Men Went to War is to be screened in a paltry…

“Gale From the Sea” Laid to Rest

“Gale From the Sea” Laid to Rest

More than 6ft tall, handsome and with the build of a rugby lock forward (which he was), John Platts-Mills blew into the English House of Commons as Labour MP in 1945 “like a gale…

Frozen Tomb of Kiwi War Pilot Uncovered

Frozen Tomb of Kiwi War Pilot Uncovered

The RAF has never forgotten a Kiwi pilot, flight officer Arthur Round, and his crew who died when their aircraft crashed in a glacier in northern Iceland during a World War Two mission. An…

Keith Park

Keith Park

A decorated fighter pilot in World War One, Keith Park was Commander-in-Chief of No. 11 Group during the Allied evacuation from Dunkirk (France) in the early part of World War Two. He…

Famed Wartime Pilot Irving “Black” Smith

Famed Wartime Pilot Irving “Black” Smith

Invercargill born Group Captain Irving Smith, famed for his courage and low-level precision bombing raids during WWII, died on Feb 16. Irving Smith: May 21 1917 – February 16 2000