Topic: Frederick Kahui Crawford (1895-1960)

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Frederick Kahui Crawford was wounded and gassed in France during World War I (1914-1918). He was my second great uncle - Debbie McCauley.

Frederick Kahui Crawford was born in Opunake on 26 October 1895 (reg. 1895/9568). His parents were John and Sarah Ann Crawford (née Birkett) who married in Hawera, Taranaki, on 24 February 1883 (reg. 1883/225).

He signed up for World War I (1914-1918), being posted as a Private on 23 August 1915. Frederick embarked from Wellington on 13 November 1915 with the 2nd Reinforcements to the 1st Battalion [New Zealand Rifle Brigade]. He disembarked at Suez on 20 December 1915. 

On 25 February 1916 he was admitted to the General Hospital, being discharged on 17 March 1916. He was taken on strength on 25 March 1916.

The following month, on 6 April 1916, Frederick embarked to Rouen, France. He was appointed acting Lance Corporal on 5 October 1916. He was attached to the Divisional School on 23 November 1916, rejoining his battalion on 7 December. On 5 November 1916 he was appointed a temporary Corporal.

On 27 February 1917 Frederick's cousin Hugh Carlisle Birkett (1895-1917) mentioned him in a letter he wrote to his sister Hazel:

All the boys are doing very well as far as I know. I was with Fred Crawford last night and he is all right. All leave has been stopped or else he should have got away by this time. 

On 7 June 1917 he was appointed Lance Sergeant. That same day, whilst serving in France, Frederick received a gunshot wound to his right thigh and inhaled gas. He was admitted to hospital in France between 8 and 12 June. His injury was reported in the North Otago Times on 22 June 1917. On 19 June he was admitted to the 3rd General Hospital, later being discharged. On 27 June 1917 he rejoined his battalion in Rouen, France, from hospital.

On 31 July 1917 he was sent to the small arms school, rejoining his battalion on 24 August 1917.

On 23 August 1917 he was promoted to Sergeant. On 11 December 1917 he received shrapnel wounds and a gunshot wound to his left leg. He was admitted to the 55th General Hospital in France before being sent to London and admitted to the 1st London General Hospital on 25 December. On 7 January 1918 he was transferred to the New Zealand General Hospital at Brockenhurst.

He was taken back on strength on 8 March 1918. On 16 September 1918 he was promoted to Company Sergeant Major.

On 8 March 1919 Frederick embarked on the Willochia for New Zealand. He was discharged from the army on 13 May 1919.

Frederick married May Campbell on 1 November 1922 (reg. 1922/7517). May was born on 4 March 1899 to Samuel and Mary Jane Campbell  (reg. 1899/5255).

They lived at 121 Lemon Street in New Plymouth.

Frederick died in New Plymouth, aged 64, on 22 August 1960 (reg. 1960/28976). He is buried in Te Henui Cemetery in New Plymouth.

May died on 19 May 1962 (reg. 1962/26422). She was buried in Awanui Cemetery in New Plymouth.


Births, Deaths and Marriages Online (New Zealand).

Cenotaph Database (Auckland War Memorial Museum).

Hugh Carlisle Birkett (1895-1917).

Military personnel file (Archives New Zealand).

North Otago Times (22 June 1917, p. 2).

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Frederick Kahui Crawford (1895-1960)

Note:Service Number: 23/1363
First Names:Frederick Kahui
Last Name:Crawford
Date of Birth:26 October 1895
Place of Birth:Opunake
Country of birth:New Zealand
Date of death:22 August 1960
Place of death:New Plymouth
Place of burial:Te Henui Cemetery
Spouses name:May Campbell
Spouses date of birth:4 March 1899
Spouses date of death:19 May 1962
Spouses place of burial:New Plymouth
Date of marriage:1 November 1922
Fathers name:John Crawford
Fathers date of birth:24 March 1860
Fathers place of birth:Cape of Good Hope, South Africa
Fathers date of death:27 July 1937
Mothers name:Sarah Ann Birkett
Mothers date of birth:10 October 1869
Mothers place of birth:Webb Street, Wellington
Mothers date of death:12 February 1956
Mothers place of death:Hamilton, New Zealand
Military Service:World War I (1914-1918)