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86222 Private James Frederick Death – 45th Reinforcements
 
James (Jim) Frederick Death was born in Pauatahanui on the 1st of August 1889, the second son of Selina and Oliver Death.  The Death family had bought section 90 at Ration Point where Robert, Oliver’s father built a house overlooking
the Pauatahanui Inlet.[i]
 
Jim was raised in Pauatahanui attending the local school along with his two brothers and two sisters. He also played
cricket for the local Pauatahanui cricket team.
 
 
 
Jim Death a memmber of the Pauatahanui Cricket team c1906
 
 
 
On 12 February 1915[ii] James married Alma Dorothy Nordell their
first son Oliver Douglas was born in December the same year[iii].
 
In 1918 James Frederick Death was selected by ballot for military
service. Jim Death entered Trentham camp on 14 August 1918 as
86222 Private Death, 45th Reinforcements. Military papers list him
as a self employed farmer of Pahautanui with his wife Alma listed
as Next of Kin.[iv]
 
In Trentham Private James was again medically assessed and found
to have advanced Hallux Rigidum in his left big toe with it being less
sever in his right big toe. Hallux Rigidum or stiff big toe, if advanced,
makes it difficult to a number of tasks including running.[v]  The
complaint meant that Private James was classified Class C, fit only for service in New Zealand.
On 27th September 1918 Private Death was placed on Leave Without Pay (LWP) until future notice.
 
Private James Frederick Death returned to farming and was finally discharged from the New Zealand Army in February 1919.
 
Jim returned to Ration Point and Alma, the couple would have four more sons, Kenneth, James (Jim), Allan (Darky) and Jack.
 
In the 1930’s he was noted[vi] on page 133 of Pauatahanui as:
 
‘Another home delivery service delivery service at the time was run by
Jim Death Snr, who farmed near the Grays on the Pauatahanui to Plimmerton Road.  Jim used to deliver his milk in billycans to customers in Plimmerton. His mode of transport in the 1930’s was an ordinary Ford Car.’
 
The Deaths’ continued to farm at Ration Point until the 1960’s when their land was sold to the Whitby Community Development Consortium.[vii]
 
James Frederick Death died in 1974.[viii]
 
Notes:
Jim’s brother Harry 20115 Rifleman Alfred Stephen Henry (Harry) Death was killed during the Battle of Messines 1917.
The older spelling of Pauatahanui – Pahautanui is used as it is written in historic documents.
 
References:
Archway Archives New Zealand – Military Files: 20115 Rifleman Alfred Stephen Henry (Harry) Death
NZ BDM Online
Paperspast Online
Pauatahanui – A local history: Helen Reilly 2013
 
Photos:
Pauatahanui Cricket Team c1909 (Cropped): Pataka Museum
 
[i] Pauatahanui – a local history: Pg 235 Death family:
[ii] NZ BDM Marriage Nordell/Death  1915/8273
[iii] Archway Archives New Zealand Military files:  86222 Private James Frederick Death
[iv] Archway Archives New Zealand Military files:  86222 Private James Frederick Death
[v] Hallux Rigidum – Stiff Big Toe: Wikipedia
[vi] Pauatahanui – a local history: Pg 133 The Difficult Years
[vii] Pauatahanui – a local history: Pg 236 Death Family:
[viii] NZ BDM Deaths James Frederick Death 1974/45355
 
Pauatahanui Cricket Team c1906