Memories are a wonderful thing and should be recorded while we can still remember them. Take the time and record your memories, it is important not only for yourself. but also to others who follow and wish to know more about you and the part that you have played in this life.

If you want an insight as to what is was like in the Navy a few years ago, take the time to read some Communicator Oral Histories . Our thanks to the Navy Museum for allowing these important documents to be displayed on this site.

Although not strictly from a Communicators perspective the following Oral Histories are displayed here to provide an insight from the female perspective.  A number of references are made to Wren Telegraphist throughout these histories.

23 Responses to Memories

  1. Dave Synnott says:

    The Dennis O’Rourke photo the missing name I think is Bill Auld leading stores walha.

    Talking of seldom heard people anyone know anything of:: Long John Bruce, Tall Timbers ?, Frank Elliot, Laurie Leef, Rick Nutt, Des M?? Graham Chappie Chapman, Bill Ross. And the Chief from Irirangi that did the first Antarctic aerials, If I remember correctly his contribution to Navy Comms would be a good story. Don’t see any photo’s of them.

    • Frank Rands says:

      Have a look at the Roll of Honour under ‘The Association’ tab. You will find many of the communicators listed who have crossed the bar together with the date of passing. I, and a number of others are working to listing all Communicators and adding photographs which family members have provided.

    • Wayne Bruce says:

      Wud that b longJohn Maurie Bruce

    • Bill Ross says:

      Hi Dave, Bill Ross advising I;m stillin the land of living but regret to inform you Graham Chappie passed the big ship above some years ago best wishes

  2. Jim Dell says:

    Rick Nutt passed away some years ago of lung cancer.

  3. Jim Dell says:

    The Chief from Irirangi was CPORE Peter Mulgrew and his story can be read here

  4. Charles Conroy says:


  5. Bob Sadler says:

    The photo of the BWO HMNZS Taranaki.. The sparker 2nd from left is Ron Stobie not his brother Stan who was on the same trip. The guy on the right nearest the camera is John Smith.
    Benjy Hathaway is in the picture too. Not sure who the one at the back right is… Bob Sadler

  6. wally strong says:

    Looking at the web page has provoked a lot memories. One I can refer to was the untimely death of Peter Mollison on the 2nd commission of the royalist. As an ordinary seaman in the adjacent mess I remember Peter well and was a member of his funeral firing party at the united nations cemetery in Pusan. Royalist had a great crew and visited some wonderful places, does visiting Saigon warrant a medal?…..The webpage has some terrific stories from my era and I’ve enjoyed reading them all. Wally Strong NZ15843.

  7. Andy Page says:

    Has anyone heard of David Davies whereabouts……..morse code and snowflakes…..

  8. Barry Walden says:

    I have been trying to locate Brian (BD) Neale, a sparker I served with on Waikato on the FE and Gov Gen Pacific Island jaunt 72/73. Brian lived in Auckland. Anyone know where he is?

  9. Ann says:

    Hi can anyone give me information on roylance Wilcox Hmnzs Blackpool?

  10. Tom (Tiny) Johnson says:

    Can anyone remember a Bunting named Brian Gurden? I remember him when in the old dockyard commcen when I was with Pilz and Chook he seemed to disappear, Also have not seen mention of Jan (skin) Ainsworth who I replaced on Waikato in 69 as my fiest sea posting.

    • Chook says:

      I he you aren’t suggesting that we had anything to do with his disappearance! last time I saw Brian Gurden he was a traffic cop with the Auckland City Council but that particular organisaition has been out of existence for many a long year. Jan Ainsworth I saw in Taranaki driving a milk tanker, also saw him at a cruiser reunion in New Plymouthin the early 90’s.

    • Craig Gurden says:

      Brian was my Dad. He passed away in Melbourne Austealia on 18th February 2008 from llver cancer. I only just came across this site.. not sure if this info is still relevant 🙂

      • Frank Rands says:

        Hi Craig, There are a lot of members who remember your father. Thanks for the details of his crossing the bar. I have updated the roll of honour. If you have any questions I am sure there would be someone who could provide you with some answers.. Kind Regards

      • Craig Gurden says:

        Hi Frank
        Thanks for the response. It would be awesome if anyone had some old photos of my Dad. I would love to have them to add to my small collection. If anyone reads this and has some please contact me

  11. Roger E. Williams says:

    Writing this from USA. We are trying to reconnect with Stephen Grant Ebrey’s family. He died in a typhoon in the North China Sea. He was a commander on the Waikato when the ship came to Portland Oregon in 1980. My name is Roger Williams. Steve and his family came back to Portland Oregon and stayed with us. We were coming to visit he and his family in New Zealand when he was killed. We have lost touch with his wife Susan, daughters Caroline and Evelyn. Any info would be appreciated.

    • Frank Rands says:

      Hi Roger,

      Thank you for your email. It would appear that the ‘Ebrey’ family are no longer in New Zealand and went overseas some years ago. Nothing has been heard of Steve’s wife and there are only two Ebrey’s in the New Zealand telephone books so looks like we have drawn a blank. Happy searching


      Frank Rands

  12. Hi,
    My name is Linda Ebrey and I am Steves sister. His brother Mark still lives in Taumarunui. Sue our sister in law lives in Auckland. I can be contacted at

  13. Carl says:

    Hey Chook, CTorrie here….you still serving??

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