The Royal New Zealand Artillery
It is with regret I advise that the RNZA Association has lost a very keen associate member, John Osborne. John passed away suddenly at his home in Kaitaia on Monday 29 January 2018.
John was very active for many years in the NZ gunsmithing, arms collecting/dealing, and armed constabulary reenactment worlds, and often submitted NZ artillery historical and other items for the association website/newsletters, including just in the last fortnight.
John Osborne (1941 -2018) President of the New Zealand Society of Gunsmiths passed away suddenly at his home in Kaitaia on Monday 29 January and was buried at Kaitaia cemetery on Saturday.
John was instrumental in setting up formal qualifications in engineering for those who wished to follow the trade of gunsmith and provided mentoring for those who chose this career path. He was also responsible for gaining formal NZQA qualifications for volunteer firearms instructors. As a shooting range consultant he frequently advised clubs on the technical aspects of setting up a new range. An avid researcher of New Zealand firearm history John freely shared his vast knowledge with many institutions including the National Army Museum and the Police Museum.
John was a pioneer in getting pistol shooting off the ground in NZ in the 1960's and ran a gun shop in Havelock North for many years in the 1970s and 80s. A skilled engineer and gunsmith John could turn his hand to any job whether it be building a 12 pounder Armstrong gun or restoring an old Colt Navy revolver. A man of strong views and principles he was never afraid to challenge those in authority if he thought the official line was a load of BS, firing off letters, e-mails and phone calls to Ministers and others in positions of authority. His efforts in promoting shooting and firearm ownership in New Zealand have been an inspiration to many who follow in his steps.
Rest in Peace John.
Thank you for all your contributions.
A service has been held for John.
Click here for John's full funeral notice