He Rau Mahara was carried out by the Whakapapa Unit to honour those Ngāi Tahu men who served in the Great War – Te Pakanga Tuatahi o Te Ao. They fought on battlefields far from home, with some of them never to return.
Their names are not often celebrated in our tribal history but the struggles and sacrifices they went through deserve our recognition.
We hope that all Ngāi Tahu whānui will feel the same sense of pride, that we feel about not only this project, but our tīpuna who served. We are excited that their stories will be preserved for future generations.
Uncovering the stories of our heroes is of huge significance to the iwi, but it is especially meaningful to the whānau of the soldiers who have been profiled. Arapata Reuben was interviewed about the project and Star Media have done an amazing video that covered our project very well, it can be seen here.
He Rau Mahara will give whānau the opportunity to learn that little bit more about their tīpuna. Without this project, the stories and memory of our men would remain unspoken.
The great men who fought in the great war are our Tīpuna, our soldiers and our heroes.
We will remember them.