Topic: The Military Story of Graham John HALL (1942-2011)

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Hauraki Bazz Porter wrote up a summary of Graham John Hall's military career upon learning of his passing in 2011. It appeared in the 65th Hauraki News in November of 2011.

In 1959 while a student at Auckland Grammar School the decision was made to enlist into the NZ Army. So on the 12th January 1960 as a 17yr & 5 months, ex student with School Certificate, he marched in to the Regular Force Cadet School, Waiouru Military Camp; Russel class, (named after a WWII NZ Officer in the New Zealand Division) .Three choices of career are offered, his first choice was as a vet, second choice was a dental mechanic, but in the final interview his pick was Infantry Instructor. By now he had his regimental number which would remain with him forever; 39157. After completing Basic training he spent the year doing courses at the School of Infantry. NBC (Nuclear- Biological – Chemical) Warfare, Sniper Instructors Course & Minor Tactics.

Graduated from the Cadet School on 12th December 1960 aged 18 years, from the rank of Cadet to Private Soldier in the New Zealand Regiment and posted to the First Battalion Depot in Burnham camp, just south of Christchurch. Carried on his Infantry training and was promoted to Lance Corporal, 26 July 1961. In 1962 he took part in a major exercise called “Reflex II”, with the Machine gun platoon with the .303 Vickers machine gun, from there he moved to the Reconnaissance Platoon.

In 1963 when a new Battalion was being formed, under the command of Lt Col Bob Gurr, for deployment to South East Asia, he joined and was promoted to Corporal. 26 July 1963 and posted to Tarendadak Camp 14 miles from Malacca town on the West Coast of Malayia for a 2 year Tour of Duty which became 2 ½ years.

Late in1964 as a member of Recon Plt.he was involved in patrolling in the Labis – Pontian area of Southern Malaya against Indonesian Commandos. He also attended a course at the Jungle Warfare School in the State of Jahore Baru. By now of course the Battalion is on Active Service and was deployed to East Malaysia – Borneo as part of 28th Commonwealth Brigade. This was his 1st deployment, as a Recce Plt Section Patrol Leader to counter Indonesian Infiltration across the border.

His second deployment was as the 2nd In Command of a dog tracker team. Each deployment was for approximately 6 months. From his Platoon with its high standard, six members were selected for the NZ Special Air Service.

On his return to New Zealand he was posted to 3 Battalion RNZIR (3 Auck North) a Territorial Force unit based at Fort Caughtley , North Shore and completed a medium mortar course was appointed as Bn Mort Sgt and promoted to Sgt 6 July 1967.

While a Regular Force Cadre NCO at 3 Auck North completed and passed courses at the School of Infantry , Antitank course & tactic course. The School of Military Engineering at Linton Camp Aslt Pioneer Instructor’s & Demolition Instructor’s course. Promoted to Staff Sgt 7 Sept 1970.

June 1971 attended an Intelligence & Security course at Papakura camp, immediately on completion was sent to South Australia for a Vietnamese Language Course 13 July 1971 – 2 Aug 1971. On the 3 Aug 1971 sent to Cunnung Military Base for Tropical Warfare Advisor’s course completed 30 Sept 1971, having passed all three courses which was the pre requirement for selection into the Australian Army Training Team Vietnam. Only 10 New Zealanders were selected for this elite unit. Totaling 990 over the years it was formed. 33 members were KIA (killed in action) 122 WIA (wounded in action, and 4 VC (Victoria Cross) were awarded.

Then posted to the Republic of South Vietnam to the Phuc Tuy Province to carry out his advisory duties, with the Temporary Rank of Warrant Officer Class II. He returned to New Zealand on completion of his Tour of Duty for six months was posted to 1 Bn Depot Burnham to be the CQMS (Company Quarter Master Sgt) for Bravo Company. During this busy time was selected for the NZ Army Hockey Team a sport he loved and enjoyed and played for 39 years, most of it during his military career.

He returned to South East Asia in 1974 for a two year posting as CQMS for Bravo Company 1st Bn RNZIR based at Dieppe Barracks, Singapore. Promoted to WOII and posted as CSM - Recruit Training Depot Waiouru on return from overseas.

His two year posting completed was sent to 6 Bn RNZIR know as 6 Hauraki Bn, as CSM of Support Company based at Dive Crescent, Tauranga.

He took his release from Her Majesty Service on the 11 April 1980, after 20 years & 3 months.

 

Medals awarded to 39157 WOII Hall G J

Operational Service Medal New Zealand

  • General Service Medal 1962, with Malay Peninsula – Borneo Clasp.
  • New Zealand General Service Medal Warlike – Malay – Thai border & Vietnam clasp.
  • New Zealand Defence Service Medal – Regular Force Clasp.
  • Pinja Jasa Malaysia Medal from Malaysian Government
  • Republic of Vietnam Medal
  • NO Long Service & Good Conduct Medal: due to a matter of conflict with a pommy medical officer whilst on active service in Borneo when on a patrol
  • In 1985 he became President of the NZ Malayan Assn

Held in the highest regard always.

Bazz Porter.

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The Military Story of Graham John HALL (1942-2011)


Year:c.1950, 1960, 1970, and 1980
First Names:Graham John
Last Name:Hall
Date of Birth:1942
Place of Birth:2011
Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 New Zealand License
The Military Story of Graham John HALL (1942-2011) by Tauranga City Libraries Staff - HC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 3.0 New Zealand License