Whirinaki war memorial

 Whirinaki war memorial

The Whirinaki war memorial, unveiled in 1948, is a carved granite slab which stands on the corner of SH12 and Whirinaki School Road. It features a relief carving of a soldier with bayonet fixed and an inscription honouring four men from the area who died in the Second World War: Captain Harding W. Leaf, Private Sam Kereopa and Private Aterea Karora, all of whom were killed in Crete in 1941, and Signalman Arthur Leaf, who was killed in Italy in 1944. The name of Private Whetu Waipuke, who died in France in 1916, has also been added.

When this photograph of the memorial was taken (March 2019), two marble tablets listing 83 names were propped up behind it. These tablets had originally been unveiled with the Hokianga Arch of Remembrance at Kohukohu in 1927, but were removed and replaced when it was re-sited for the second time in 2002. They were then placed in storage for a time in the Kohukohu library, but are now held by the Hokianga RSA, which put them on display at an ‘Injured and Wounded Veterans Special Service’ held at Whirinaki on 16 November 2018. The RSA plans to install them permanently in an as-yet-undecided location in the south Hokianga. 


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