Erebus disaster

Page 7 – Remembering Erebus

After confirmation was received that no one had survived the crash of Flight TE901, expressions of sympathy began to arrive from around New Zealand and the world. Queen Elizabeth II, Prime Minister Rob Muldoon, and Air New Zealand management and staff were among the many who publicly expressed their feelings of sympathy to the victims’ family and friends.

Even before this confirmation was received, memorial masses had been held at churches throughout New Zealand. In the days that followed more formal memorial services took place in the country’s main centres, and many more were held in other communities affected by the disaster – including at Scott Base in Antarctica. As the recovery operation neared completion, those involved built a timber cross which was erected near the crash site on Mt Erebus.

Since the first anniversary of the disaster on 28 November 1980 further memorials have been erected, and numerous memorial services have been held, to commemorate those who died. Most of these memorials lie within the Auckland region, the flight’s departure point and destination, but memorials have been erected and memorial services have been held elsewhere in the country. Coordinated church services observed the 25th anniversary of the crash on 28 November 2004. 

How to cite this page

'Remembering Erebus', URL:, (Ministry for Culture and Heritage), updated 27-Nov-2019