Medal Presentation to Next of Kin

  • Mark Burton

Prime Minister Helen Clark and Defence Minister Mark Burton have asked the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) to help locate family members of New Zealanders who lost their lives in post World War II military operations.

Helen Clark and Mark Burton will present the New Zealand Operational Service Medal (NZOSM) to the next of kin of New Zealanders who were killed or died in military operations since 1945. NZDF, however, does not have next of kin details for more than half of the 120 New Zealanders who died in post World War II military operations. It is now seeking contact details for these family members.

In many cases next of kin listed in NZDF records have died, while others have changed their names through marriage. Those with a family member who died on operations since 1945, and who have not received an invitation to an NZOSM presentation, should contact Donald Anderson, Project Officer Medals Initiatives, Personnel Branch, Headquarters New Zealand Defence Force, Private Bag, Wellington, (phone: (04) 498-6840; e-mail:

The NZOSM was recently instituted to recognise all New Zealand personnel who served our country in operations since 1945. The medal met a long-standing need for distinctive New Zealand recognition of operational service.

“Families of those who lost their lives serving this country have not always had the appropriate acknowledgement of their loved ones’ service,” Helen Clark said. “The New Zealand Operational Service Medal presentations will convey the country’s appreciation of that service.”

Medal presentations are likely to take place at two functions. The first will be at Parliament Buildings in Wellington on the afternoon of 3 September, and the second will be held in Auckland at a later date.