FREDERICK SMITH ~ Brothers who were fatally wounded at Gallipoli, died 50 years apart.

8/293 ~ FREDERICK SMITH     This particular case struck a chord with me almost as soon as I had started the research.  As I delved into Fred Smith’s life I discovered several coincidences which indirectly linked me personally to the Smith family.  These I will relate at the end of this story. Emma M. of Amberley in North Canterbury and husband Dion had … [Read more...]

SAMUEL CHASE ~ The lost medal of a Hawkes Bay soldier who died alone in a Nelson asylum.

6/4594 ~ Samuel CHASE     A former RNZN sailor who served on the HMNZS Achilles and Leander during WW2, Ron P. is now an Australia resident.  Ron recently sent a request to the NZDF Personnel Archives and Medals (PAMS) for help to return a WW1 Victory Medal named to a New Zealand soldier: 6/4594 PTE. S. CHASE N.Z.E.F.  With no current information … [Read more...]

DENYS BOWEN PATTERSON ~ A chance request uncovers father’s unclaimed WW2 medals.

NZ 39841 ~ DENYS BOWEN PATTERSON, RNZAF     Gail Harper of Nelson contacted MRNZ in September 2017 asking for advice on how she could find out what her father's WW2 medal entitlement had been.  Gail had previously obtained a copy of the military records of her father's war service in the RNZAF and upon reading it, realised that although there was no … [Read more...]

DANIEL LAURENCE SLOAN ~ Stolen medals found in Lake Forsyth by an eagle-eyed Little River resident.

36369 ~ DANIEL LAURENCE SLOAN     Readers who have cycled the Little River Rail Trail or travelled State Highway 75 from Christchurch to Akaroa on Banks Peninsula will be familiar with Lake Forsyth.  The state highway and Rail Trail borders the SW bank of the lake.   Mid-way along the lake is the Little River Freedom Camp, a small vehicle park on … [Read more...]

THOMAS WALTER TAYLOR ~ #200 ~ ID bracelet of a WW2 Gunner from Rai Valley, Marlborough is found after burglary.

20663 ~ THOMAS WALTER TAYLOR     A call to MRNZ from the New Zealand Police in late October 2017 was another of their requests for help to reunite a personal item of military memorabilia.  A bespoke Second World War identity bracelet had been handed in to the New Brighton Police Station, and I would attempt to locate an owner family or … [Read more...]

MAURICE CLIFTON DRUMMOND ~ ‘Death Penny’ & medal reunited with Braeburn, Lower Moutere descendant.

29235 - MAURICE CLIFTON DRUMMOND - KIA  Belgium   This is yet another case of a Memorial Plaque and medal 'lost' to an NZEF soldier's family by time and circumstance.  The plaque commemorates the death of Maurice Clifton Drummond, a former Motueka Mounted Rifleman and WW1 infantry soldier who was Killed in Action in Belgium, … [Read more...]

FREDERICK HAROLD MINTROM, MC, MM ~ Missing double gallantry group of a Canterbury soldier and officer welcomed home.

26363 & 3/1/5 - FREDERICK HAROLD MINTROM, M.C., M.M.       Foreword:  It is rare for MRNZ to have an opportunity to reunite a double gallantry medal group with the recipient's family.   One of only two NZ Machine-gun Corps recipients of two First World War gallantry decorations, his exploits warrant a book.  I have attempted to provide a … [Read more...]

THOMAS SEYMOUR PRICHARD, BEM (Mil) ~ Medal belonging to New Zealand’s “Mr Shooting” found in Waikari, Nth Canterbury.

271581 - THOMAS SEYMOUR PRICHARD, BEM (Mil)      An article appeared in an October edition of the North Canterbury News, relating the return of a WW1 Memorial ('Death') Plaque we had reunited with a Waikari family.  Brian O'Sullivan, also a Waikari resident, read the article and was prompted to recall a medal he had inherited from his grandmother after she died … [Read more...]

SAMUEL ALBERT McMILLAN, MM ~ Mataura River ‘gold’ is reunited after a 50 plus year unresolved mystery.

24/1439 - SAMUEL ALBERT McMILLAN, M.M. (aka William Henry McMillan)     I was recently privileged to do some research for the descendant family of another WW1 soldier who had earned a gallantry medal during the Battle of Harvincourt, France in September 1918. The research came about in a circuitous way which had started with a gold fob pendant/medal that had been … [Read more...]

CHARLES ROBERT GRATWICK ~ Deceased Estate medals of UK migrant reunited with descendant during visit to NZ.

8/3909 - CHARLES ROBERT GRATWICK    Polson McMillan (PM) is a Dunedin law firm.  One of PM consultant experts in family and property law is Helen Davidson from whom I received a letter in January 2016 regarding the Estate of Miss Christine Bertha GRATWICK, a 91 year old unmarried lady of Dunedin who had died at the Yvette Williams Rest Home on 12 January … [Read more...]