Topic: Major Keith Hamilton Hume (1912-1995)

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Tauranga resident Roly Hume has collected the stories, letters and documents around his relative 2nd Lieutenant Lloyd (Jock) Hamilton Hume who was killed in action during the Second World War. Keith Hume was an elder brother of Jock and the second youngest in the family. Keith served in the Second World War as No 31667 27th Machine Gun Battalion, NZ Expeditionary Force.

Major Keith Hume 1912-1995  13-1316Article looking wrong? Click for archived version here.

In 2013 Roly sent to Tauranga Memories a few photos of his uncle, Keith Hume and a letter read out at Keith's funeral by an old soldier friend. Roly's email to Tauranga Memories read...

 "These photos and reading are of my Dad's younger brother Keith who you will remember  sent the "coded" telegram to Dad informing him of their youngest brother Jock's death in Crete... I will send you a copy of a letter from a mate of his to "Hec" whom I guess was the old soldier giving the reading at Keith's funeral to help him in preparing his notes. Out of the photos the one I have always liked is the one taken of Keith in Syria. Keith was in many war theatres from Nov.1941 to Feb.1944, and I still remember as a young boy being in awe of the shrapnel wound he received in the crossing of the Sangro river."  Ian Hume,  a nephew of Keith (emailing Roly) recalled seeing a wound on Keith's upper leg once when he was "in his togs doing somersaults down those sand-dunes on the other side of Raglan harbour". "He was always so much fun, with us kids" writes Ian, "I always remember  the excitement at home, when Mum & Dad told us Heather & Keith were coming!!"

 In 1995 at Major Keith Hamilton Hume's funeral, the following was read out by an old soldier.

"In saying farewell to Major Hume I think back to the days we first met, I as a sergeant of 27 Machine Gun Battalion, suddenly converted into a junior officer and uncertain how to behave, meeting Keith Hume, then acting as Adjutant of the Maori 8 machine gun base depot to which I was consigned to await posting back to the Battalion. I quickly realised what a fine & helpful man he was, always ready with advice & assistance, quiet & capable, clear thinking and showing all the qualities of a first class officer & a true gentleman. A good friend in the mess, a good leader on the job. Our ways parted at one time with my transfer to another unit. Finally I returned to 27 Battallion when Keith & I succeeded in getting ourselves wounded & in the same hospital at the same time. For me the war was over but Keith continued as a company commander & was then transfered to [ I think ] to 22 Battalion with view to command. As OC of 4 Company 27 MGBN. Keith went through the desert battles & went to Italy still in that position. After being wounded in the Sangro River crossing he survived the savage battles of Cassino, returning to NZ. early in 1944. Particularly in the early post war years he took a keen interest in Battalion reunions etc.right up to the point when failing health made it no longer possible. Writing to me a senior officer of the Battallion described Major Hume as a "great man & a very good companion". Others have described him as most outstanding officer 27 Battallion ever produced, Sleep soundly Major.


 In the Official History of New Zealand in the Second World War 1939-45 - 27 (Machine Gun) Battalion, by Robin Kay Keith is noted as being an Accountant of Wellington, Hamilton Born (December 30, 1912) who was wounded Nov 28 1943 (page 200).



This page archived at Perma CC in September of 2016:

In September 2016 Roly Hume was interviewed by a news outlet in New Zealand. You can view the article here: 

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Major Keith Hamilton Hume (1912-1995)

Year:1940, 1942, 1943, and 1944
First Names:Keith
Last Name:Hume
Date of Birth:30/12/1912
Place of Birth:Hamilton
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 New Zealand License
Major Keith Hamilton Hume (1912-1995) by Roly Hume is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 New Zealand License