23/1456 James Sprunt Paton NZEF
NZEF Trio, WW2 Pair and NZTSM - Paton
The 1914/15 Star Trio, 1939/45 War Medal, New Zealand War Service Medal and Territorial Service Medal group of six issued to James Sprunt Paton of the New Zealand Army Postal Corps.
James Paton was born on Christmas Eve 1891 at Stratford, New Zealand. Son of James Baxter and Jane Campbell Paton (née King). He trained as a postal clerk and served with the Post and Telegraph Corps prior to enlisting for service with the NZEF in August 1915. James served in Egypt over Christmas 1915/16, although he suffered from ill-health for much of this period. In March 1916 he transferred to the Army Postal Corps and served in Egypt and England until May 1917. He deployed to France, and served in the HQ, 3rd NZ Rifle Brigade throughout 1917. In March 1918 he was detached to HQ 22 Corps before returning to the UK in June 1918. He was promoted to Sergeant in August 1918 and to Staff-Sergeant in May 1919. After the war he returned to his work with the Post and Telegraph Department, serving for 22 years until his resignation in 1928.
During the Second World War James saw extensive service in New Zealand with the New Zealand Temporary Staff, including serving at the Japanese Prisoner of War camp at Featherston, although after the notorious massacre of rioting Japanese prisoners in February 1943. In May 1944 he was awarded the NZ Territorial Service Medal as a late claim (AO1944/69). James was promoted to Warrant Officer Class 1 in 1947 before finally being discharged from the NZ Military Forces in 1948, having become blind in one eye due to a detached retina. James Paton died on 4th June 1954 at Nelson.
The trio is correctly impressed 24/1459 S/SJT J.S. PATON. N.Z.E.F., the WW2 medals are unnamed as issued (in 1950) and the NZTSM is correctly impressed J.S. PATON. LATE N.Z.E.F.