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Police and the NZ Defence Force have released the name of the soldier who is missing in Lake Moawhango, Waiouru.
He is Private (PTE) Michael Victor Ross, aged 29 years, from Kaitaia.
Ruapehu Area Commander Inspector Steve Mastrovich said police and NZDF are doing everything possible to find Private Ross and return him to his family.
“Sadly there is little chance of finding him alive given the length of time he has been missing and our focus now is the recovery operation.”
PTE Ross is a Rifleman with 1 Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment (1RNZIR) based at Linton.
PTE Ross enlisted into the NZ Army on 19 August 2009 and was posted to 2/1 Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment (2/1 RNZIR) at Burnham. He is an experienced soldier, who served in Timor Leste in 2011.
Commander Headquarters Training and Doctrine Colonel (COL) Evan Williams said:
“The NZ Defence Force continues to work with the NZ Police to provide the required assistance for this operation,” COL Williams said.
PTE Ross’s family do not wish to make any comment at this time, and media are asked to respect this.