New Zealand Navy decommissions HMNZS Endeavour after 30-year service

The Royal New Zealand Navy has decommissioned its tanker HMNZS Endeavour after almost 30 years of service.

The decommissioning ceremony took place at Devonport Naval Base in Auckland on December 30.

HMNZS Endeavour flew her white ensign for the last time earlier this month as she entered Auckland Harbour, flying her 148-meter decommissioning pennant.

Endeavour also made a final visit to its homeport in Taranaki in November this year with the tanker’s crew exercising their freedom of entry, marching through the city with drums beating, band playing and colors flying.

HMNZS Endeavour started her service in April 1988 after being built in South Korea. She is the third ship of this name to serve in the Royal New Zealand Navy and is named after James Cook’s HM Barque Endeavour on his first voyage to New Zealand.

Crewed by 50 officers and sailors, Endeavour spent her years in service refueling ships at sea, enabling other navy vessels to operate over long distances for extended periods of time.

She will be replaced by the future HMNZS Aotearoa which will have twice the displacement of HMNZS Endeavour and will carry 30 per cent more fuel.