Crossed the Bar

Crossed the Bar: Robert Batt

Former Petty Officer Robert Batt, a veteran of the Battle of the River Plate in 1939, died last month at the age of 94. Ex POMEM Bob Batt was one of only two remaining River Plate veterans. He joined the Navy during a recruitment drive in Napier before the war. He was three days into service on HMS ACHILLES when war broke out and the ship changed course for the Atlantic to meet up with a British task force, in pursuit of German battleship Admiral Graf Spee. The engagement and resulting loss of the Graf Spee near Uruguay (her captain opted to scuttle his damaged ship rather than re-engage the British fleet and lose thousands of men) made instant heroes of the ACHILLES crew back in New Zealand. Mr Batt later described the Battle of the River Plate as an important battle “because it showed th...

Crossed the Bar: Mow-Lam Cheun

Mow-Lam Cheung, originally from Hong Kong, worked as a Royal Navy laundryman from 1960, when Hong Kong laundryman had contracts to serve the fleet based there. He worked on nine Royal Navy vessels before moving to New Zealand in 1984. He served as a civilian laundryman on board HMNZS SOUTHLAND (1984 to 1989) and HMNZ Ships CANTERBURY, WAIKATO and WELLINGTON from 1989 to 1997. He died on 24 April, aged 90, at North Shore Hospital with his son, Patrick Cheung, at his side – a concession from the hospital during COVID-19 lockdown. He was buried at Auckland Memorial Park, Silverdale.


Cdr Tony Chadwick, RNZN (rtd), ex RNO Christchurch, passed away peacefully yesterday with his family around him. Funeral details will be forwarded in due course.

Crossed the Bar: Maurice David Mitchell

MITCHELL, Maurice David. RNZN 15038 Passed away Friday 4 May 2018 with his loving children by his side, now at peace. Much loved Dad to Maree, Andrea, Bryce, Charlie, Diana and Eddie. Sadly missed and much loved Dad, Poppa, family man and mate. A service for Maurice will be held at the Remuera Club 27-33 Ohinerau Street, Remuera on Wednesday 9 May at 11am, followed by private cremation. In lieu of flowers donations to Mercy Hospice Auckland, PO Box 47 693, Ponsonby, Auckland 1144 would be greatly appreciated. The family would like to thank the staff at Mercy Hospice for the wonderful care provided to Maurice. All communication C/- P.O.Box 24664 Royal Oak, Auckland 1023.

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