By Glyn & Richardson, Colin Harper
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Additional info for In the Face of the Enemy - the Complete History of the Victoria Cross and New Zealand
11 The widely accepted version is that these had been cut from Russian guns captured at Sevastopol. 13 It is of course possible that the interpretation arose simply because at the time when it was stated that the metal was to come from captured guns, it was assumed this meant the Russians because they were the enemy most recently defeated. The one agreed point remains, however, that the weapons providing the bronze were captured ones and thus there was no monetary cost in its provision. Another issue was the status of the medal, which took several years to be settled.
They deserve to be more widely known than they currently are. There have been several other publications on New Zealand Victoria Cross winners, although most have been simple compilations of their service records and VC citations together with some photographs. The most detailed and enduring of these publications is G. 5 Bryant’s work has been helpful in pointing the way for this book, as has his research material, which he generously donated to the Alexander Turnbull Library in Wellington. However, because Where the Prize is Highest is now more than 30 years old and contains several errors and omissions, this publication also had its limitations.
O’Hea was later to serve in the New Zealand Armed Constabulary in 1872-73. The other incident happened in 1867, when Dr Douglas and four members of the 24th Regiment received the VC for bringing boats through dangerous surf on Little Andaman Island in the Bay of Bengal to rescue another party who were stranded there and believed to be at risk of attack by hostile natives. The New Zealand Wars were the catalyst for the next extension to the warrant. Until the case of Major Heaphy was raised, there had been no recommendations for personnel from ‘locally raised forces’.