LEONARD, Michael Martin
(Service number N/N)

First Rank Last Rank


Date 3 November 1881 Place of Birth Waimate

Enlistment Information

Date 8 June 1918 Age 36 years 6 months
Address at Enlistment St Andrews, Timaru
Occupation Farmer, stock agent
Previous Military Experience
Marital Status Married. One child
Next of Kin Mrs C. LEONARD (wife), St Andrews, South Canterbury
Religion Roman Catholic
Medical Information

Military Service

Served with NZ Armed Forces Served in Army
Military District

Embarkation Information

Body on Embarkation
Unit, Squadron, or Ship
Embarked From Destination
Other Units Served With
Last Unit Served With

Military Awards

Service Medals
Military Awards

Award Circumstances and Date

No information

Prisoner of War Information

Date of Capture
Where Captured and by Whom
Actions Prior to Capture
PoW Serial Number
PoW Camps
Days Interned
Liberation Date


Date Reason

Hospitals, Wounds, Diseases and Illnesses

Post-war Occupations



Date 2 June 1970 Age 88 years
Place of Death Waimate
Memorial or Cemetery Waimate Lawn Cemetery
Memorial Reference Plot 990
New Zealand Memorials

Biographical Notes

Michael Martin Leonard was born on 3 November 1881 at Waimate, the third son of Maurice and Mary (née Walsh) Leonard. He was baptised Roman Catholic two days later, on 5 November 1881, at Waimate. Maurice and Mary had married in their native County Kerry, Ireland, and come to New Zealand by 1879. Thomas Leonard and Hanorah Leonard, brother and sister of Maurice, also came to New Zealand and married here. Maurice played a significant part in the Waitaki Village-Tawai district and in Waimate. Along with his older siblings, Michael was educated at Glenavy School and transferred to Tawai in December 1890. He left school at the age of fourteen. Michael Leonard was best man for his oldest brother, Maurice, at his wedding on 3 November 1904 at St Joseph’s Church, Morven.

Michael married Catherine Cecilia Packer (a sister of James Packer who served in World War I) on 18 January 1911 at Waimate. Their only child, Martin Joseph Leonard was born on 3 March 1912 at Geraldine. Martin started school at Fairlie and transferred to St Andrews School in February 1918.

In 1911 and 1914 Michael and Kate, as she was known, were farming at Tripp Settlement, Woodbury. There he was listed on the Reserve Roll. He was a stock agent at St Andrews when his name was drawn in the ballot in May 1918. Attesting on 8 June 1918 at Timaru, he gave his occupation as farmer (National Mortgage) and named his wife as next-of-kin – Mrs C. Leonard, St Andrews, South Canterbury. He had very slight impairment of his right wrist, having broken his arm in November 1917.

After the war Michael and Catherine continued to farm in the Waimate district. Michael Martin Leonard died at Waimate on 2 June 1970, aged 88 years. He was buried in the Waimate Lawn Cemetery, his wife buried with him in 1977. His brothers, James Joseph Leonard (who enlisted as Leonard James and whose death is believed to be as a result of his war service) and Patrick Joseph Leonard served in the First World War, and another brother, Joseph Thomas Leonard, also enlisted. The two oldest sons of the family – Maurice Leonard and John Patrick Leonard – were both listed on the Reserve Roll, being married men with children. Three cousins Michael Joseph Leonard, Michael Vincent Foley (with the Australian forces under an assumed name) and Timothy Joseph Foley – all served in the War.


NZ BDM Indexes (Department of Internal Affairs) [26 February 2021]; Baptism Index Christchurch Catholic Diocese CD held by South Canterbury Branch NZSG) [26 February 2021]; School Admission record (South Canterbury Branch NZSG) [26 February 2021]; Waimate Lawn Cemetery headstone transcription [26 February 2021]; Waimate Lawn Cemetery headstone image (Waimate District Council) [03 March 2021]; NZ Electoral Rolls ( [02 March 2021]

External Links

Related Documents

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Researched and Written by

Teresa Scott, SC branch NZSG

Currently Assigned to

Not assigned.

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