John Subritzky was born on 4 January 1919 in Northland. He was the son of Herbert (Herepete) William Subritzky and his wife Pinia (nee Heteraka).
Prior to his enlistment he was employed as a freezing worker for the Auckland Farmers Freezing Company. He was single and his next of kin was given as his mother, Mrs Pinia Subritzky of Puhoi. He enlisted in the New Zealand Army on 3 February 1942 at Ohaeawai and was posted to the 2nd Battalion, Auckland Infantry Regiment. At the time of his enlistment he stood 5 foot 5 inches tall, had dark eyes and dark hair, he was 23 years of age.
On 3 March 1942 he was posted to the 2nd Maori Battalion based at Remuera clain=ming tribal affiliations with Ngapuhi and Aupouri tribes through his mothers family. Whilst under training with the 2nd Maori Battalion he suffered an injury to his right foot on 19 March 1942 and underwent hospitalisation and surgery. He served with 'A' Company, 2nd Battalion until 21 November 1942 when, as a result of his injury, he was medically downgraded and placed on leave. He was discharged and placed on leave. He was then formally discharged from the New Zealand Army on 21 October 1943 in consequence of his being medically dowgraded.
John Subritzky was awarded the following medals: War Service Medal 1939-45, New Zealand War Service Medal.