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Army honours Private David Stewart NZBM with theatrette dedication

The New Zealand Army today honoured and remembered Private David Stewart NZBM in ceremony by dedicating his name to the 1st Battalion, Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment (1 RNZIR) Theatrette situated at Linton Military Camp.

13 August, 2022

Private Stewart lost his life through the selfless acts of looking after others during a blizzard on Mt Ruapehu in August, 1990. He was one of six military personnel who died during the alpine training exercise - the largest loss of life 1 RNZIR has suffered in any one event in the unit’s history.

“David’s selfless actions embodies all the best traits we want in our people. The theatrette was chosen to honour him because it is our learning hub for our junior soldiers,” said 1 RNZIR Commanding Officer Lieutenant Colonel Logan Vaughan. 

“They will walk into the David Stewart NZBM Theatrette to carry out their training and will read about his bravery. That will help them understand the values of the soldiers in the 1st Battalion and the culture they are now a part of.”


Whānau and dignitaries arrive to the ceremony at Linton Military Camp.

Kathy Stewart, mother of Private David Stewart, with Chief of Army Major General John Boswell.

At the conclusion of the service, the Last Post was played, poppies were laid and volleys fired.  

Chief of Army Major General John Boswell was in attendance alongside whānau and dignitaries.

“What we are doing here is recognising the courage of a brave and selfless young soldier who lost his own life caring for his comrades in appalling conditions. This serves as an enduring reminder to Private Stewart’s bravery on the mountain all those years ago.”

At the conclusion of the dedication service, the Last Post was played, poppies were laid and volleys fired.  

The five others who perished on Mt Ruapehu were Privates Brett Barker, Stuart McAlpine, Mark Madigan, Jason Menhennet and Able Rating Jeffrey Boult. All were honoured during proceedings.