Botany and Ormiston Times
Howick and Pakuranga Times : Howick and Pakuranga Times, Mon, October 15
www.times.co.nz Howick and Pakuranga Times, Monday, October 15, 2012 --- 19 HOWICK TYRES & ALIGNMENT trading as Beaurepaires Howick 33 Wellington St Howick ✆ 534 4975 121350 HOWICK TYRES & ALIGNMENT trad g Beaurepaires Howick WINZ Quotes Welcome VOTE FOR US THIS YEAR! BEAUREPAIRES HOWICK winner of the Howick Courtesy Award 2011 WE WANT TO KEEP IT! 2012 AWARDS START SOON! Penguins School of Early Learning Penguins School of Early Learning Penguins School of Early Learning provides high quality care and education for young children. Follow us on facebook to see more of what we do: www.facebook.com/PenguinsSchoolOfEarlyLearning 197 Whitford Rd, Howick. Ph 537 4970 www.penguinsearlylearning.co.nz 4 Meals provided including breakfast 4 20 hours ECE and WINZ approved 4 Qualifed teachers and FREE digital portfolio 4 Expansive outdoor areas with brand new playgrounds 4 FREE speech screenings for children aged 3+ (optional) 4 5 afternoons from $24 per week. Conditions apply, contact us for details. 117678 by Crete survivor leg was amputated. He was shifted to the German transit camp at Salonika where for four months he says he endured the worst conditions while a prisoner of war. Mr McColl was then moved to Egendorf Hospital Prisoner of War (POW) camp in Germany, where he was registered as a POW and given a number. About 12 months had passed since he was initially taken prisoner and it took 19 months before the news reached New Zealand. He was posted missing for 19 months, seven months after receiving his number. “I had my photo taken with bald head and dressed in this Jerry uniform holding my number up. “I saw it after; what with my thin face, my big nose seemed to dominate my face. I looked awful. Man alive, I looked a real bad bugger, a real crim.” A series of POW camps then followed. “I don’t think a lot of us would have made it without the Red Cross parcels,” says Mr McColl. “Food is everything. It lifts your morale and you look at life differently. Those months at Salonika were a shocker. Hunger is not easy to cope with. It just takes over your whole thinking. “POW life brings out the true nature in a person. Some get moody and just want to be by themselves. Others want to talk all the time and are a bit hard to deal with. But we were all young, very few of us over 30, and that stood us in good stead. “The Greece and Crete campaign was the frst major battle our divi- sion was involved in and we were badly defeated. “In Greece, the Germans gave us a slap across the face and a kick in the backside and sent us on our way. It was a shambles, a debacle and utter confusion. “But Crete was an utter, utter shambles. Most of the troops landed in Crete with no arms at all, no artillery whatsoever and the infantry had a few rifes. “We had the odd Vickers gun with no tripod. Our aircraft count was three Spitfres, two Gladiators, like a biplane. “They were all destroyed in the frst few moments of the attack. The Germans used about 1200- 1400 planes against us.” New Zealand casualties on Crete were 3800. Mr McColl was repatriated to New Zealand on a Dutch hos- pital ship, the Oranje. About a week before he arrived back in Auckland, his brother Allan was walk- ing along the central city’s High Street and bumped into Shirley, who was to become Murray’s wife. “He told her I was on the way home and there would be the odd party or two.” Allan took “Shirl” to the party, but Murray took her home. They were married in 1946 and spent 51 happy years together before Shirley died in 1996. Mr McColl worked for Henderson Electric Motors in Newmarket and eventually set up McColls Lighting Cen- tre in Panmure, the frst retail lighting business of its kind in Auckland. In 1974, as Pakuranga was being developed, they bought their Sunnyhills property to establish the family home. Mr McColl was later cared for by his daughter Suzanne until his death on September 14.For many years he was president of the Auckland War Amputees Association, a member of the Panmure Rotary Club and he played lawn bowls at Bucklands Beach Bowling Club. He leaves his son Bruce (now deceased), daughters Suzanne Gain and Adrienne Campbell, of Flat Bush, and two grandchildren. ENLISTED: Murray McColl, in uniform and ready to fight with his machine gun battalion in the Greece and Crete battles in World War II.
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