Private Tarre Parekura
The late Private Parekura joined the New Zealand Army on 10 December, 1969, and was posted to the Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment. He joined 4th Battalion, The Royal Australian Regiment/New Zealand (ANZAC) Battalion, in April 1971 as a member of Victor Six Company.
On 25 June 1971, in Phuoc Tuy Province, Private Parekura was acting as number two on a machine gun when his platoon made contact with an element of 1st Battalion, 274 Regiment, located in a strongly defended bunker system. The enemy retaliated with a heavy volume of automatic and rocket fire as a well as directional mines.
Private Parekura calmly directed the fire of his fellow machine gunner onto the enemy position. When a nearby machine gunner was wounded, Private Parekura moved to assist him although at the time all automatic weapons were receiving concentrated fire from the enemy.
When the platoon broke contact to extract their wounded, Private Parekura assisted in fighting a rear guard action to cover their withdrawal. He repeatedly exposed himself to mark the platoon position with smoke so that helicopter gunships could engage the enemy. When a resupply of smoke grenades was dropped outside the platoon perimeter, Private Parekura was one of a small party who volunteered to retrieve it.
Throughout this and all subsequent actions in which he was involved, Private Parekura displayed exceptional courage and professional skill. His actions reflect great credit upon himself, his Regiment and the New Zealand Army.
Private Parekura’s award was received by his widow Mrs Doreen Parekura.