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No. 38 (March 1962)
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Mr Rangikapo Ratahi

The death has occurred of Mr Rangikapo Ratahi, aged 79, of Opunake. He was a former member of the Taranaki Maori Trust Board.

Mr Ratahi was one of the chief apostles of the Ratana Church. He was a staunch supporter of the Maori Women's Welfare League and was its kaumatua in his home district. He was also well-known for his tribal committee work.

In addition to being a member of various Maori organisations, Mr Ratahi was a member of the Buffalo Lodge.

Mr Paneta Wi Maihi Otene

The death has occurred in Hawkes Bay of Paneta Wi Maihi Otene.

Mr Otene was educated at Mangateretere School, Waerenga a Hika College, Gisborne, Te Aute College and St Stephen's College. He served with the First N.Z.E.F. as a member of the pioneer Maori Battalion in Gallipoli and in France where he was severely wounded. As a result of war services he never really enjoyed good health.

In the interests of the R.S.A. organisation, Mr Otene was an active foundation member and Secretary of the Hokowhitu a Tu Association—a band of men who took a deep interest in the welfare of Maori ex-servicemen of the First World War and the affairs of the Maori people generally.

He was a man of diverse interests. In the political field he was an ardent organiser of the Labour Party and he was the liaison officer of the trades unions throughout the country.

Mr Otene was a talented musician and composed several songs. Perhaps the best known of his compositions was the ‘Ake Ake Waltz’, the theme being a tribute to one of his greatest ancestors, Rewi Maniapoto. Mr Otene was an accomplished pianist and an expert violinist.

After his return from the First World War, Mr Otene took up farming on the Wharetoto block, on a part of what was known as Lochinvar Station, and at Wainui on the Waikato River. He subsequently returned to Ruohapie and Manapateretere in 1931, where he lived until his death.

Mr Otene was a member of the Tuwharetoa Trust Board for a number of years and assisted in the management of the Pouakani development scheme at Mangakino. He was also on the management committee of the Mangakino Trust Board.

Mr Charles Kahaki

Mr Taare Te Omanga (Charles) Kahaki, a returned serviceman from the Second World War, died recently in his home in Rangitukia, East Coast, after a lengthy illness. He was 42.

A builder by trade, Mr Kahaki later took up dairy farming and farmed successfully until ill health forced him to sell his dairy herd.

He was also a competent shearer and fencer.

He is survived by his wife, Hinerangi, and a young family.

Mrs Mate Kaua

Mrs Mate Kaua, a distinguished Maori leader from Gisborne, died last November.

Mrs Kaua was President of the Turanga Maori Women's Welfare League and trustee of Poho-o-Rawiri meeting house, a leading member of Holy Trinity Choir, an expert exponent of all aspects of Maori culture, and several times New Zealand Maori Women's Golf Champion.

Speaking at a memorial service prior to the funeral, the Rt. Rev. W. N. Panapa, Bishop of Aotearoa, said: ‘She whom we mourn today possessed the rare gift of perfect balance in all phases of life, physical, mental and spiritual. Her example is one which might well inspire others of our Maori race.’

The Bishop referred particularly to the late Mrs Kaua's education in the atmosphere of a Christian school, where her spiritual values were soundly founded.

‘That is how our Maori children should be educated, in circumstances where things of the spirit are given equal weight with things of the world,’ he said. ‘Mate was like a bird in the air, perfectly adjusted to her environment and exercising her powers by instinct. The instinct that guided her was that of faith and responsibility to her own. Women of the quality and spiritual strength of Mate Kaua will have a great influence upon our social, educational and religious advances.’

Attendances both at Church and at the cemetery included strong representations of the European groups in which Mrs Kaua had been active, as well as Maori delegations from all parts of the North Island.

Mrs Kaua is survived by her husband, Peter, who is District Maori Welfare Officer Gisborne, and one son.

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Mr Jack Alfred Bidois

Mr Jack Alfred Bidois, a well-known member of the Te Puna Maori community, Tauranga, who was also prominent in rugby, died last November.

Mr Bidois was born at Te Puna in 1909, and educated at the Te Puna School. He was a very prominent horseman in his youth, and won several trophies at picnic race meetings. He excelled as a horsebreaker.

Mr Bidois was outstanding as a rugby player from the age of about fifteen, representing Tauranga as a junior and then as a senior. In the early 1930's he transferred to Rotorua and while there he represented Rotorua.

He retired after 18 years as a player but continued as an administrator in the role of coach and selector for his home team, Te Puna.

Last year he was elected as a member of the Tauranga Rugby Sub-Unions management committee and served also as the Sub-Union's junior representative selector.

Mr Matiu Edwards

The death occurred at Wairoa last November of Mr Matiu Edwards. He was 68 years of age. Mr Edwards was a prominent Maori rugby player in Hawkes Bay in the early 1920s. He was a member of the pioneer Maori Battalion team which played in New Zealand in 1919 and also played fullback for the New Zealand Maori team which toured Australia and New Zealand in 1922.

Mr Lou Davis

Mr Louis Henry Davis, well known throughout Northland and much of New Zealand as a champion of sport for youth and for the well-being of the Maori race, died at his home at Whakapara aged 78.

Born at Taumarere, near Kawakawa, Mr Davis spent practically his whole life in Northland.

Mr Davis took up farming at Whakapara when he settled back permanently in the Whangarei district in 1909. From 1912 he was a member of the Whangarei Rugby Union and he was connected with the North Auckland Rugby Union since its formation nearly 40 years ago.

Mr Davis played rugby for Whakapara in the early days and in 1912 organised the first Northland Maori rugby team.

After initiating the first Maori-Pakeha match in the north, Mr Davis became a Tai Tokerau selector in 1929, and he chose the team which lifted the Prince of Wales Cup that year.

In recent years he was a member of the Hukerenui club and has served on the NARU Maori Advisory Board as well as the WRU management committee. Apart from rugby Mr Davis's main sporting interests were tennis and table tennis.