Sandra Coney's new book explores the faces behind Waitākere's First World War memorials.
Gone West explores ten Great War memorials of Waitakere, from an oak tree planted at a New Lynn School, to rocky memorials on the West Coast, to the RSA obelisk in the soldiers' cemetery at Waikumete.
Much more than a book about bricks and mortar, Gone West details some of the soldiers and a nurse associated with these memorials, from VC-winner Stanley Judson to Cook Island soldiers, a loved chaplain and members of the Pioneer Battallion. Families who sent as many as six sons are revealed as Gone West chronicles the contribution of some of Waitakere's founding families.
There is much to learn about the villages and settlements of Waitakere, and how they coped with the losses of the Great War. Many still have Anzac and Armistice ceremonies at these memorials which remain potent symbols of the painful events of 100 years ago.
Gone West - Great War Memorials of Waitākere and Their Soldiers is available for $45 across West Auckland, including Whitcoulls New Lynn and the Arataki Visitor Centre.