Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search


U.S. World War II Veterans historic return to Wellington

U.S. World War II Veterans historic return to Wellington

May 1, 2014

For the first time in 72 years, six American World War II veterans are returning to New Zealand to revisit their ‘old haunts’ in Wellington and Paekakariki.

They will arrive in Wellington on Sunday (May 4) for a whirlwind stop-over on their way to a ceremony in Tarawa, in the Republic of Kiribati - to repatriate the remains of 25 of their “Brothers” who lost their lives there during the war.

The group of Marines aged 88-93, and nick-named ‘The Band of Brothers’ all trained in New Zealand as part of the Second Marine Division - prior to fighting in the four-day Battle of Tarawa that raged across land that is now the capital of Kiribati.

The ‘Brothers’ were all stationed in camps in Kapiti and Porirua Districts* and will be hosted during their Wellington stay by the Kapiti U.S.Marines Trust: www.marinenz.com, with assistance from the U.S.Embassy, the Porirua City Council, the Friends of Old St Pauls, the Film Archive the National War memorial and the Paraparaumu Branch of Westpac.

They will be picked up from the Airport by members of the Early American Car Club who will drive them in vintage American cars, manufactured between 1934 and 1948, to the Wellesley Hotel (a former meeting place for American generals based here during the war.)

The group is expected to travel by train to Paekakariki. They will be greeted by the Kapiti Brass Band and are expected to visit the Paekakariki Station Museum and, former Camps, Paekakariki, Mackay (Whareroa Farm) and Russell (Queen Elizabeth Park). They will also lay a wreath at the recently renovated U.S.Marines Memorial in the park and share a community lunch with the locals. While in Porirua City they will visit former camps in Titahi Bay and Pauatahanui.

The trip is funded by The Greatest Generations Foundation (TGGF) http://www.tggf.org/ and Mark Noah of History Flight Inc. http://historyflight.com/nw/ TGGF is an international non-profit International organization dedicated to promoting recognition and respect for war veterans of past and current conflicts.

History Flight Inc. is a non-profit organisation committed to keeping World War II aviation history alive. The organisation uses profits from its flights to fund on-going research and recovery expeditions to bring ‘Missing in Action’ servicemen home from their burial sites in remote battlefields of WWII.

Although regarded as one of the most important battles in the Pacific War, the Battle of Tarawa (November 20-23, 1943) came at a considerable human cost with more than 5,000 Japanese and 1000 US lives lost.

The battle was recognized at that time as the most violent battle in the 200+ history of the US Marine Corps, and marked the start of the United States march across the Pacific towards Japan.

Mark Noah has undertaken more than 30 trips to Betio (the business centre of South Tarawa) and even has an office there. He has devoted the last ten years of his life to the funding and retrieval of the remains of Marines and Sailors from the Battle of Tarawa - repatriating more than 100 Marines and Sailors back to their homeland.

US Marine Corps will travel in parallel with the Brothers on their return to Tarawa and Marines based at the U.S. Embassy in Wellington will also accompany them on their trip to the Capital.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Wellington.Scoop: Serco – First The Prisons, And Now It Wants To Run The Trains

As the government continues its inquiry into Serco’s discredited administration of Mt Eden prison in Auckland, here in Wellington there’s further scrutiny of the British outsourcing company – because it’s competing to take over the running of our commuter trains. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The TPP Countdown, And Mary Margaret O’Hara

To date, the Key government has been unwilling to share any information about this TPP deal until it is too late for outraged public opinion to affect the outcome... the disclosure process is likely to consist of a similarly skewed and careful exercise in spin. More>>


Australia Deportations: English Relaxed On Immigration Centre Conditions

Labour's Annette King: “There have been numerous reports from inside these detention centres on just how bad conditions are... If they were being held in any other foreign jail, I imagine Mr English would be somewhat concerned. More>>


Schools: Achievement-Based Funding Would Be A Disaster

The Education Minister’s speech to the PPTA Conference raising the spectre of achievement data driving a new funding system would be disastrous, says NZEI Te Riu Roa. More>>

  • Video Out-Link - PPTA Annual Conference 2015 on Livestream (Q+A dicussion suggests funding would be directed to less successful schools.)

  • ALSO:

    ECE Report:

    Key In NY: Prime Minister Addresses United Nations

    Prime Minister John Key has addressed the United Nations General Assembly in New York, focusing on a call for action in Syria and on other conflicts, reform of the veto process and on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. More>>.


    Gordon Campbell: On The Lack Of Accountability Over Philip Smith

    In New Zealand, accountability is an exotic creature rarely glimpsed at ministerial level, or among senior management. The flight to Rio by the paedophile /murderer Philip John Smith/Traynor is no exception. More>>


    More On Corrections

    Get More From Scoop



    Search Scoop  
    Powered by Vodafone
    NZ independent news