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NZ Post Stamps

NZ Post Stamps

This series of stamps explores the stories of 6 veterans deployed after 1995. You can purchase the stamps on the NZ Post website.

Are all veterans elderly and retired? Who are New Zealand’s veterans?

The six veterans featured in this series of stamps were all deployed from 1995 or later, and sometimes deployed multiple times. They represent the over 42,000 living veterans who have served New Zealand in dangerous places while serving in the New Zealand Army, the Royal New Zealand Navy or the Royal New Zealand Air Force.

They were all awarded the New Zealand Operational Service Medal(external link) (NZOSM). This medal is given for service that exceeds the normal requirements of peacetime service and involves a credible military threat from the enemy’s military, insurgents, or other hostile forces.

After their service, veterans return to civilian life, but impacts from those deployments can remain with them for the rest of their lives.

They may march in the Anzac Day parades with the older veterans of previous conflicts and wars, but these veterans aren’t retired; they have left the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) and now live and work in our communities. They are ordinary people who, at times in their lives, performed an extraordinary service for their country.

Where to get the stamps

The Veterans Stamps series and First Day Covers are available from NZ Post.

NZ Post collectables shop(external link)

6 stamps of veterans on a silver fern background, with a New Zealand Operational Service Metal to the left

NZ Post Official First Day Cover

Featured veterans

The veterans who feature in this stamp series are:

Rebecca Brierton

A stamp featuring a portrait of Rebecca, wearing her medals

Joined the Royal New Zealand Navy as a Midshipman Supply Officer in 1994 and served until 2015.

She was deployed to:

Rebecca also spent three months in Bagram, Afghanistan as second in command of the National Support Element (NSE) after breaking her wrist while on patrol in Bamian/Bamyan.

She is currently studying law.

Ben Peckham

A stamp featuring a portrait of Ben, wearing his medals

Ben served in the New Zealand Territorials before transferring to the Regular Force of the NZ Army (1RNZIR) in 1992.

In September 1994, he was deployed to Bosnia-Herzegovina(external link) as part of the United Nations Protection Force.

Since leaving the NZ Army in 1997, Ben has worked in a variety of roles including as security for a mining company in Western Tanzania.

Ben is a prominent supporter of the veteran community. He has served as a RNZRSA(external link) district support advisor, is on advisory groups for the Ranfurly Veterans’ Trust(external link), and for Te Arataki mō te Hauora Ngākau mō ngā Mōrehu a Tū me ō rātou Whānau | The Veteran, Family and Whānau Mental Health and Wellbeing Policy Framework. He is a current member of the Soldiers, Sailors and Aviators’ Association of New Zealand(external link) and Taskforce Kiwi(external link).

Ben represented the NZDF at the 2018 Invictus Games in Sydney. He has previously completed a graduate diploma in psychosocial studies and enjoys working with Kaimanawa horses(external link) from Waiouru. 

Kelley Waite

A stamp featuring a portrait of Kelley, wearing her medals

Joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force in 2000 as a telecommunications operator and technician. In 2010 was reassigned to become a helicopter crewman and stayed in that role until 2016.

Kelley was deployed to:

Kelley received the NZOSM for her service in the Solomon Islands and also received the Afghanistan Secondary Operational Area medal. She received the Defence Service Medal for over three years’ service, and the Long Service and Good Conduct Medal for 16 years of exemplary service.

Kelley is currently with Philips Search and Rescue Trust as a helicopter crewman and emergency medical technician.

Vance Leach

A stamp featuring a portrait of Vance, wearing his medals

Joined the Royal New Zealand Navy in 1999 as an ordinary electronics technician. Later specialising as a weapons technician.

At the completion of his training, he was posted to HMNZS CANTERBURY and then deployed to East Timor(external link). In 2004 Vance sailed to the Persian Gulf on the HMNZS TE MANA as a leading weapons technician, for Operation Enduring Freedom which included the Afghanistan Maritime Interdiction Operation (MIO).

Vance left the Navy in 2009 as a petty officer weapons technician to pursue a law degree at the University of Auckland and now works in employment relations.

Ange Coyle

A stamp featuring a portrait of Ange, wearing her medals

Joined the NZ Army in 2006 as a signaller and later specialised as an electronic warfare operator.

She served in Afghanistan(external link) on three occasions between 2008 and 2011. 

Ange left the Army in 2014 and joined the Department of Corrections. She has been leading a Veterans Project at Corrections, which aims to support both staff and prisoners who have served.

Having had first-hand experiences of some of the difficulties that some veterans face when transitioning out of service, Ange is passionate about supporting the wellbeing of veteran staff at Corrections and across the Public Sector, as well as veterans entering the criminal justice system.

David Bennett

A stamp featuring a portrait of David, wearing his medals

Joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force in January 2001 as an avionics technician. He served in No.40 Squadron as an aircraft maintainer before training to join the flight engineer trade in 2007 as a C-130 Hercules flight engineer.

He took part in operations in:

David left the Air Force in July 2012 and is currently a project manager, inspecting and maintaining oil and gas pipelines.

NZ Post collectables shop(external link)

Behind the scenes

Rebecca Brierton and Ange Coyle stand casually in front of a photography backdrop in a studio

Rebecca Brierton and Ange Coyle at the photoshoot.

Kelley Waite wearing her medals, standing casually in front of two photography backdrops

Kelley Waite at the photoshoot