War takes its toll on soldiers, their loved ones, and the entire community. This heartbreaking video of the New Zealand army shows just how impactful it really is.
More than 200 soldiers from the 2nd and 1st Battalion of the Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment performed an ancestral war cry known as a “Haka.” Originally, it was performed by Maori warriors before going to battle. This haka, however, was to express grief over losing three of their comrades. This ceremony was to honor the lives of 31-year-old Corporal Luke Tamatea, 26-year-old Lance Corporal Jacinda Baker, and 21-year-old Private Richard Harris.
According to the NZ Defence Force who released the video on YouTube; “Haka is used throughout New Zealand by many, not only ethnic Maori, to demonstrate their collective thoughts. There is a haka for each of the Armed Services, as well as the Defence Force. Units with the NZ Army have their own haka, and this particular one is their Unit haka. It powerfully acknowledges the lives and feats of their fallen comrades as they come onto the Unit’s parade ground. It’s also an emotive farewell for they will leave via the waharoa (the carved entrance way) for the very last time”.