Other Research Projects

Māori Kaumātua Veteran’s study 2019-2020

Onwards - Hōia tōkeke parekura The warriors unyielding battle

Veteran's video

Research Team

Andy Peters, Dr Tess Moeke-Maxwell, Dr Lisa Williams, Rawiri Wharemate, Whio Wharemate Hansen, Professor Merryn Gott and the Te Ārai Palliative Care and End of Life Research Group, School of Nursing, University of Auckland.


The study

In 2019 Andy Peters, Tess Moeke-Maxwell and the Te Ārai research group wanted to explore how kaumātua veterans, who served in Vietnam, Malaya and Borneo in the 60s and 70s, were getting on in the 2020s. Most of the veterans are now their 70s. Many of their friends have passed away due to illness or suicide. Andy and his veteran friends wanted to find out how the rest of the veterans were doing in their older age.

We interviewed 9 former military people in Auckland from a range of different iwi including the wife of a veteran who passed away a few years ago. Tess Moeke-Maxwell wrote the script for the film, and the film was produced by Dr Lisa Williams.

The purpose of this film was to highlight what we learned from the study. The word ‘tōkeke’ means ‘unyielding’, ‘hōia’ means warrior and ‘parekura’ means battle – we wanted to show the unyielding battle that veterans had to cope with, and still have to cope with, in order to maintain their wellness. We also wanted to celebrate the contributions they give to their whānau, friends and communities. We hope this information helps to increase health professional’s understanding about what veterans need to keep well. Andy and the veteran participants also hope this film can help the New Zealand Defence Forces and Veterans' Affairs to care for our New Zealand veterans as they age. The kaumātua who took part in this study know that veterans will have a lot of things in common.



The research team would like to thank the veteran kaumātua who took part in this study; this film could not have been made without their support.

We are very grateful to the School of Nursing, University of Auckland for providing Dr. Tess Moeke-Maxwell with a Professional Development grant to enable this study to take place.

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