This is the Memorial Cross (GVI) for New Zealand, issued during WW2 to the surviving spouse or mother of the deceased soldier. It’s sometimes called the “Mother’s Cross” for this reason. This one is unnamed and stamped “sterling” on the reverse. There is some evidence of name removal on the rear.
Archive for New Zealand
This booklet, dating from 1946, is a facsimile of the surrender documents signed on the USS Missouri, in Tokyo Bay, on the 2nd September 1945. These were produced by the National Archives in the US for distribution to institutions and individuals in education. I have the German ones here.
This is a wonderful New Zealand 3rd Division group to a courageous young man, sadly KIA endeavouring to save others under terrible conditions. 2nd Lieutenant Colin David Griffiths was a 24 year old ex-shop assistant from Timaru, New Zealand who was killed in action at Vella Lavella in the Solomon Islands on the 2nd of October 1943.
He lost his life during a third attempt at rescuing a cut-off patrol from the Japanese. Swimming a line ashore to the party, consisting of a number of wounded, sharks had to be held off by tommy-gun fire. Griffiths was killed in the water, along with almost everyone else in the rescue party, by heavy Japanese small arms fire. To be clear here, this was Griffiths third attempt and the second that day to reach the beach.
This group is an unnamed rack belonging to a veteran of the 2nd New Zealand Division in Italy who later served in the Occupation Force in Japan between 1946 and 1949. It consists of the 1939-1945 Star, the Italy Star, the Defence Medal, the 1939-1945 Victory Medal, the New Zealand 1939-1945 War Medal, the New Zealand 1946-1949 Occupation Service Medal and the LSGC Medal for the Legion of Frontiersmen. These medals belonged to James Stuart Farquharson, Private, 624746, NZ 2nd Division. James somehow managed to get to Italy in time for the surrender, then got sent to the Pacific in time for the surrender there. Lucky bugger!
The Legion of Frontiersmen Medal is an unofficial non-sanctioned medal so really it should not be included with the others in this rack and I can only assume that the veteran placed it here so he would have a little more tin swinging on Anzac Day parades.
The Vietnam Medal was a joint Australian and New Zealand campaign medal awarded for service in the Vietnam War. The medal was jointly developed by Australia and New Zealand, although there were separate Royal authorisation warrants for each country.
Qualifying service for the Vietnam Medal includes:
- 28 days in ships or craft on inland waters or off the coast of Vietnam.
- One or more days on the posted strength of a unit or formation on land.
- One operational sortie over Vietnam or Vietnamese water by aircrew on the posted strength of a unit.
- Official visits either continuous or aggregate of 30 days.
- One day or more by members of accredited philanthropic organisations attached to Australian forces in an official capacity for full-time duty between 29 May 1964 and 27 January 1973.
The medal was awarded to all members of the New Zealand armed forces who, between 29 May 1964 and 27 January 1973, either:
- served for 28 days, continuous or aggregated, in ships or craft employed in operations on inland waters or off the coast of Vietnam;
- served for one day or more on the posted strength of a unit or formation on land in Vietnam;
- conducted one operational sortie over Vietnam or Vietnamese waters by aircrew on the posted strength of a unit allocated for direct support of operations in Vietnam;
- served for 30 days or more, continuous or aggregated, on official visits, inspections or other occurrences of a temporary nature on duty in Vietnam, or in ships or craft engaged in operations off the Vietnamese coast.
- Service terminated by death or wounds, or the award of a decoration for gallantry, led to the immediate award of the medal, regardless of whether the qualification period had been fulfilled.
I have two of these, a single here and one in a small New Zealand group.
The medal was instituted in 1995 to recognise New Zealand military personnel who served in the occupation forces in Japan between March 1946 and March 1949. In 2002 the Royal Warrant was amended to also recognise service between September 1945 and March 1946, including service by the crews of HMNZS Gambia and HMNZS Achilles in Japanese waters.
I have another of these in a group.