Sergeant, Armed Constabulary

New Zealand Cross
New Zealand Gazette Date: No.27 of 11 May 1876
For bravery at Otautu in March 1869, holding a difficult observation post under heavy fire. He was seriously wounded.

New Zealand Cross
New Zealand Wars Medal

Born 1837
Died 2 November 1913 Auckland, New Zealand
Buried Waikumete Cemetery, Auckland

New Zealand Herald, Volume L, Issue 15447, 3 November 1913, Page 8
The death of Sergeant Richard Shepherd, a holder of the New Zealand Cross, occurred yesterday at the residence of his son-in-law, Mr A. Miles, Woodside Road, Mount Eden.  The deceased was aged 75 years.

Sergeant Richard Shepherd, of the New Zealand Constabulary, obtained the New Zealand Cross for distinguished bravery at Otauto on March 13th 1869, while holding the ground close to the encampment and enabling a close reconnaissance to be made by Major Kepa and Colonel Sir G.S. Whitmore.  Sergeant Shepherd with six volunteers were told to hold the ground until the arrival of a force which was expected.  The Maoris coming up, a fight took place, and Sergeant Shepherd was dangerously wounded in the neck, the bullet passing within a hair breadth of the jugular vein.  Three others were killed, and three, besides Sergeant Shepherd, wounded.  On another occasion Sergeant Shepherd also had a narrow escape from death.  For four days with a small party of men he held a narrow ridge at the back of Ngatapa Pa, wherein Te Kooti and a large number of Maori were encamped.  The party was subjected to a heavy fire from the Maori, its only cover being a trench dug out with bayonets and tomahawks.  On the fourth day some of the men left the trench for the purpose of having a wash and the Maori taking advantage of the weakened state of the defenders made an attack, killing two and wounding one of the party.  Sergeant Shepherd had a shoulder knot shot off and a bullet tore the skin off two fingers.  While lying on the cliff trying to prevent a wounded man from falling over he looked up and saw a Maori with a rifle to his shoulder within 3 feet of him.  Sergeant Shepherd thought that his time had come, but fortunately at the critical moment a comrade shot the Maori dead.