September 2014: Leading Stoker George Bain, RN grave.
Leading Stoker George Bain’s grave is located within Waitakere Cemetery.
After receiving an email from a retired officer about the state of the grave a small team from HMNZS NGAPONA, Divisional Cox’n WOMM O’Carroll and WOSCS Davies, travelled to the Waitakere cemetery. Locating the grave they set about giving it a quick tidy up and mowed the grass around the plot.
Image right: The restoration concluded with a blessing and a salute.
Contact was made with Auckland Council’s Cemetery Manager regarding approval for a more permanent structure to help keep the plot looking neat. Negotiations concluded with the approval from council for a wooden framed structure to be placed on the plot.
A week later WOMM O’Carroll, WOSCS Davies returned with the RNZN Padre Chaplin Haines to complete the restoration work on George’s grave. At the conclusion of the work the grave was blessed and a Naval salute given.
So who was Leading Stoker George Bain RN?.
He joined the Royal Navy on the 7th July 1894 on a 12 year engagement and on the 6 July 1906 he re-engaged for a further 8 years for the period of the emergency (World War 1). Leading Stoker Bain served in a variety of ships in many parts of the world. His final posting was to HMS TORCH which was operating in the New Zealand/South Pacific station. In August 1914 shortly after returning from Vanuatu where a rebellion was put down George Bain fell ill and was transferred to HMS PHILOMEL. He died of a heart failure at the age of 43 on the 22 August 1914. Leading Stoker Bain was buried with full military honours at Waitakere Cemetery on 25 August 1914.
Image above: The original condition of the grave.
Image above: Restoration work in full swing.