Warbrick memorial stone

Carving detail Memorial plaque

On 29 September 2005 a tohu or memorial stone to Sergeant/Pilot Barney Poukeke Warbrick was unveiled at a ceremony held on the Waiuku golf course. On 16 August 1944 Sergeant Warbrick died when he crashed his Corsair NZ 5515 into the golf course on a training flight from Ardmore airfield. He was the first trained pilot of Ngāti Te Ata descent.

The tohu, carved by George and Karl Flavell, depicts a hawk and a Corsair aeroplane on the front and a korowai (feathered cloak) on the back, the latter honouring Sergeant Warbrick as a Ngāti Te Ata rangatira.

Barney Warbrick is buried at Tahuna Marae, to the north of Waiuku. His name is also listed on the Puni roll of honour and in a grove of memorial trees at Puni School and on a roll of honour in the Wesley College chapel.

Sources: ‘Pilot Loses Life: Accident Near Waiuku’, Auckland Star, 17/8/1944, p. 2; Bryan Cox, Pacific Scrapbook, 1943-1947, Roseville NSW, 1997, p. 36; ‘Carved tohu honours fallen pilot’, Franklin County News, 27/9/20005, p. 3; Tony Waters, ‘Aircraft Crash on Waiuku Golf Course’, t/s, 2005; Cenotaph Database.

Community contributions

1 comment has been posted about Warbrick memorial stone

What do you know?

John Berrill

Posted: 22 May 2016

My twin brother and I, witnessed the plane just missing our water tower, as it plunged into the golf course just a short distance away. We were just 4-5 years old at the time, and were not allowed to go over unti much later, but I can still remember the sad sight off twisted metal and some smoke coming from the sight some few hours later.
The story at the time was that the pilot had done a few circuits over the local Kentish Hotel, lost height and plunged into the golf course, between the 2nd and 9th hole.
A sad and vivid memory, even to this day.
John Berrill