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No. 54 (March 1966)
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Mr Mororekai Kaupeka Piripi

Mr Mororekai Kaupeka Piripi, a leading rangatira of Ngati Wai, died at Whangarei on 28 November. He was aged 85.

The son of Henare Kaupeka Piripi, Mr Piripi was one of the last remaining authorities on Maori history and tradition in the Northland area.

He was a great advocate of education, and was intensely interested in the welfare of his people.

He was instrumental in organizing much of the sub-division of Maori lands in the north, believing that this would result in a better use of the land.

Mr Piripi is survived by his second wife, whom he married 11 years ago, and 11 of his 16 children. There are 76 grandchildren and 40 greatgrandchildren.

He was buried at Mokau Cemetery after a service at the Punaruku Latter Day Saints Chapel.

Mr James Te Hikoi Paora

Mr James Te Hikoi Paora, a leading elder of Ngati Whatua, died at Orakei, Auckland, last December. He was aged 92.

Mr Paora was the youngest son of Paora Kawharu, a leading rangatira of Ngati Whatua. He was unmarried.

He was born near Helensville and lived most of his life in Northland except for the last 15 years at Orakei. Mr Paora had a wide knowledge of Maori history and tradition, chants and lore.

The funeral service at Orakei was conducted by his nephew, the Bishop of Aotearoa, the Rt Rev. W. N. Panapa.

Mrs Keata Nikora

Mrs Keata Nikora of Manutuke, near Gisborne, died last November in her 101st year.

Mrs Nikora spent most of her life in the Manutuke district. A strong adherent of the Church of England, she was associated with the first church in the pastorate and had vivid memories of the first missionaries on the East Coast, particularly of Bishop William Williams and his son Leonard.

She also remembered the standing forests at Manutuke which surrounded the fields of wheat, and recalled reaping the wheat by sickle, threshing it with manuka flails, and hand-winnowing the grain.

A member of the Rongowhakaata tribe, Mrs Nikora was the daughter of Wiremu Kauae (later known as Wiremu Tooke) and Harriet O'Brien (Harete Paraine). She married Mr Huruhuia Nikora at Manutuke.

Remarkably active and alert, Mrs Nikora retained good sight and hearing until the last, and had an excellent memory of past events.

Predeceased by her husband in 1951, she is survived by two sons, Messrs M. P. Nikora and K. Nikora, and one daughter, Mrs Hiraina Nukunuku.

Mr Graham Latimer

The death occurred last November of Mr Graham Latimer Snr. He was aged 65.

Mr Latimer was a leader of the Ngati Kahu tribe, and was also a member of the Aupouri and Te Rarawa tribes.

Born at Pamapuria, Mr Latimer was educated at Kaitaia and Te Aute College. He joined the army in 1917 and after returning home worked for a time on the gumfields.

In 1921 he married Miss Lilian Kenworthy of Houhora, and took up farming in the Pamapuria district.

When World War II broke out Mr Latimer again enlisted and rose to the rank of captain in the army, becoming a recruiting and welfare officer in Northland.

After the war he moved to Auckland and in 1950 started work on the wharves. He was a member of the Waterside Workers' Union from its inception and was an executive member for a number of years. At the time of his death he was a committee member of the Watersiders' Benefit Society and secretary-treasurer of the Waterfront Rugby League team.

He was best known for his welfare work among the Maori waterside workers and put a great deal of time and effort into his work in this direction.

While in Northland Mr Latimer was prominent as a sportsman and sporting administrator in both rugby and tennis. For many years he was a member of the North Auckland Rugby Union Maori Advisory Board.

He is survived by his wife, one sister (Mrs Annie Taylor, of Mt Roskill), four sons, Graham Jnr. (Tinopai). Frank (Te Puke), Joe and Lloyd (Auckland) and two daughters, May (Mrs Tataha, of Glen Innes) and Julia (Mrs Kake, of Te Atatu).

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Sister J. R. Kearney

Sister Janet Ramsay Kearney, a well-known figure in the Maori mission field around Taupo, Te Teka, Waikaremoana and Taumarunui, died in Wanganui last December. She was 68.

Born in Scotland, she came to New Zealand 60 years ago and lived for many years at Fordell, where her father, the late Rev. W. Kearney, was Presbyterian minister.

Sister Kearney later did her deaconess training at Dunedin before working amongst the Maori people.

From 1945 to 1950 she was president of a committee, consisting of representatives of three denominations, which was set up to build a church on the shores of the lake at Tuai near Waikaremoana. In 1963, along with the Anglican and Methodist ministers, she was invited to open the new church, and preached the first sermon in it.

Sister Kearney had lived in Wanganui since her retirement in 1956.

Mr Richard Guy Webb

Mr Richard Guy Webb, until recently principal of Te Aute College, died last December in Napier. He was 59.

Mr Webb had been principal of the college since 1951. He retired a few months ago after 40 years in the teaching profession, because of ill health.

Highly regarded in the teaching profession, Mr Webb served overseas with distinction in World War II and gave many years to the administration of sport and service organisations.

In 1926 he entered the Canterbury University College, now the University of Canterbury, where he graduated Bachelor of Arts. In 1928 he became a foundation member of the staff of the Rotorua High School. While he was there he studied and graduated Master of Arts, and continued to teach at the school until the outbreak of World War II.

Mr Webb volunteered for service and went into camp in 1940 as an officer of the 24th Battalion. He went to the Middle East with the 3rd Echelon in August of that year. During service in Grecce he was appointed second-in-command of his battalion and later given command of B Company with the rank of major. Following a tour of duty as officer in charge of the tactical training school and then a field maintenance centre, he rejoined his old battalion and in November 1942 he assumed control of the battalion.

He was taken prisoner at El Agheila, and spent three years as a prisoner of war.

He returned to New Zealand in 1945 and rejoined the staff of the Rotorua High School, remaining there until taking up his post at Te Aute.

In Rotorua Mr Webb was active in sporting administration. He was secretary of the Rotorua and Bay of Plenty Cricket Associations. He served 14 years on the Rotorua Rugby Sub-Union, including a period as president. He was a vice-president of the Rotorua R.S.A. and its representative on the Rehabilitation Committee.

He is survived by his wife and two sons. John (Hamilton), and Brian (Christchurch), and a daughter, Jennifer. There are two grandchildren.

Mr Peter Ihaia

Mr Peter Ihaia of Ngongotaha, Rotorua, died last January at the age of 59.

Born in Haroto, which is on the Napier-Taupo highway, Mr Ihaia was educated at Te Aute College. For a number of years he farmed a property at Tahorakari, and he was at one time consolidation clerk in the Maori Affairs Department, Rotorua.

He was recognised as an expert on Maori land affairs.

Moving to Ngongotaha some years ago, Mr Ihaia served in many organziations, including the Ngongotaha County town committee, the school committee and the Ngongotaha Ratepayers' Association.

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