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Full Name: Dennis Waitapu
Rank Last Held: Able Seaman
Forename(s): Dennis
Surname: Waitapu
Also Known As: Daniel Paehua
War: Korean War, 1950-1953
Gender: Male
Date of Birth: 2 July 1935
Place of Birth: Mangaorongo, Waikato, New Zealand
Occupation before Enlistment: Regular Serviceman
Body on Embarkation: Kayforce
Embarkation Unit: Royal New Zealand Navy
Military Awards: New Zealand Operational Service Medal (NZOSM)
Last Unit Served: Royal New Zealand Navy, HMNZS Pukaki
Place of Death: Kure, Japan
Date of Death: 25 November 1955
Age at Death: 20
Year of Death: 1955
Cause of Death: Accidental death on active service
Biographical Notes:
  • Regular serviceman prior to serving with the Royal New Zealand Navy 1953-55
  • Served in HMNZS Pukaki 1955
  • Died as a result of accidental injury
  • "Able Seamen D. Waitapu and T. te H. Taiatini, who died in Kure, were returned to New Zealand for burial." (McGibbon 1996, vol. 2, p. 480 n97)
  • Able Seaman Waitapu's sister in law, Mrs Patricia Waitapu of Auckland, received the New Zealand Operational Service Medal on his behalf from the Prime Minister and the Minister of Defence at a presentation at the Auckland War Memorial Museum on Thursday 27 November 2003
Additional Information: Real name is Daniel Paehua
Further References:
  • Ian McGibbon, New Zealand and the Korean War, Volume II: Combat Operations, Oxford University Press, Auckland, 1996, pp. 372, 413, 480 n97.
  • New Zealand in the Korean War. NZHistory online. URL:
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