Song performed by the Mataatua and Te Arawa groups attending the investiture ceremony at Ruatoria.
(Site editors note: recording starts part way through song and recording marred by speed fluctuations)
Ngarimu Victoria Cross Investiture
The Ngarimu Victoria Cross Investiture Meeting and Reception to His Excellency the Governor General, 6 October 1943.
On 4 June 1943 news was broadcast world-wide that 2/Lt Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa Ngarimu had been awarded the Victoria Cross for his role in the attack on Point 209 at Tebaga Gap, Tunisia. It was the sixth VC to be awarded to a New Zealander in the war, and the first to a Maori soldier.
The public investiture ceremony where the Governor-General presented the award to Mr & Mrs Hamuera Ngarimu was held at Whakarua Park in Ruatoria, Ngarimu’s home town. At the time it was one of the largest and most fully documented Māori gatherings ever held. Despite the rain and mud, 7000 people attended the event, including the Prime Minister and other parliamentarians, Battalion members on furlough, Home Guardsmen and 1300 schoolchildren, who came from all parts of the country. Three hundred performers had been brought together from the Gisborne district alone. Te Whānau-ā-Apanui and Ngāti Porou, led by Sir Apirana Ngata hosted the event that featured five hours of entertainment. Members of the National Film Unit, the official Government photographer - John Pascoe, and the press documented the event. Cameramen from the US Marine Corps also headed to Ruatoria to record the event. Read more about the event here.
… tangi mohou kua hinga mai
Pare te ope mou i muri nei
Ko wai hei rau i whai i o tamariki
Ko wai ra hei arahi
He oriori e ki a koe Ngarimu
Kua hinga ake i Ihipa
Kua mutu te mamae
Kua riro koe i nga kapua
Moe i to moenga roa
Kua taha koe i nga kino o te ao
Moe mai e tama e
Huri noa nga tau nei e
Ka tangi tonu au
Kei roto i taku manawa
Te mamae te hui nei
Soundfile from Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero. Any re-use of this audio is a breach of copyright. To request a copy of the recording, contact Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero. Any re-use of this audio is a breach of copyright.