Fallen soldiers remembered fondly
Sat, 25 Aug 2012 6:05p.m.
By Dave Goosselink
Mourners gathered at Burnham Military Camp today for the second time this month to farewell three more of New Zealand’s soldiers.
Corporal Luke Tamatea, Lance-Corporal Jacinda Baker and Private Richard Harris were killed by a roadside bomb last weekend, while working in Afghanistan.
Commanding officer Major Craig Wilson spoke fondly of his young charges today, remembering Private Richard Harris as the heart and soul of his company.
Lance-Corporal Jacinda Baker was described as a mother hen to her unit, while Corporal Luke Tamatea was a strong instinctive soldier and "a legend to us all".
“Regardless of the heat this might draw from the chain of command, it was an honour to serve with you, it was an honour to serve with you all,” said Mr Wilson.
Hayden Tamatea said his brother was an inspiration, but he chose to join the navy so he did not have to follow in his shadow.
I didn't think I'd see my brother like this. I thought he was bulletproof ay,” he said.
All three families acknowledged the risky careers their sons or daughter had chosen, with Jacinda's father speaking about the huge loss.
She came into this world as a surprise, and unfortunately she's left in the same manner,” he said.
A gun salute followed the service as the flag-draped caskets were escorted out of the military camp.
Their bodies have been returned to their families for private funerals next week.
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26/08/2012 11:26:24 p.m.
The man just got shot, give him a break JC, it brought tears to my eyes to see him walk up there and speak as well as he did considering. The response from @JC is so correct, I really feel like some people really need to employ the "if you have nothing nice to say then say nothing at all" tactic a lot more. And of things you do not know then do not speak. Pretty simple really don't you think?
26/08/2012 7:54:29 p.m.
@ JC wrote:
Enlighten us with your worldly experience how training can stop indiscriminate IED's? .
Major Craig Wilson was injured in a battle preceding the incident that took the lives of the 3 soldiers, hence the use of his left hand, and he was inside a building hence the need not to wear head dress. . . He also mentions before he salutes, that he expected to draw heat from the chain of command with his salute.
If you knew his background, you would not be making idiotic pointless comments.
26/08/2012 12:10:26 p.m.
Show some respect to these people. Its easy for you to sit in your comfortable armchair and make these comments, without thinking of the sacrifice these soldiers have made.
26/08/2012 9:43:58 a.m.
im with barb wrote:
im with Barbara Sumner Burstyn and her comments. they died fighting another countrys war not ours, they were serving the us not new zealand. they just jumped on the band wagon like a bunch of thugs do it a fight on a friday night. They died doing a job nothing else. they shouldnt be held any higher than any other work place death. it may sound sad but its true. if nz were in war with a country sure but we are not this is not our war, not our fight so utterly not our responsibility. people get paid extremely well for being in these situations and the money they receive reflects that. when they are fighting to protect our country they deserve our respect, these people don't they haven't helped our country in anyway, more so made us targets in another countries war
26/08/2012 8:17:26 a.m.
I am wondering how well trained this deployment was. Better training can prevent deaths. Training is the responsibility of command.I was rather surprised to see that Major Craig Wilson does not know how to salute, or that one doesn't salute when not wearing a headdress.
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