July 29, 2014
Heart attack fells Whakaue rangatira
A former law partner says Ngati Whakaue leader Rawiri Rangitauira has left his mark on Rotorua and the wider Maori world.
Mr Rangitauira died on Sunday of a heart attack after a waka ama training session on shores of Lake Okarita.
He had recently come out of prison after serving part of a four and a half year sentence for offences committed when he was caught up in an internet scam, and he was working on a book on Ngati Whakaue's karakia and marae.
Annette Sykes says he was a repository of the tribe’s knowledge and a carer for those in the community.
" I worked with Rawiri for thirty years. We did the te reo Maori claims together. We started the broadcasting which set up Maori television and Maori Radio and him and I, I think we did the first treaty settlement here in Te Arawa. If you go to the Warehouse where everyone is that was the railway station and now its one of the largest multi million dollar earners for the Rotorua area. So Rawiri certainly left his mark in many ways in our fair city here in Rotorua " she says.
Rawiri Rangitauira is survived by his wife Cathy Dewes.
He is lying in state at Tunohopu Marae, and his funeral service is at 11 on Thursday morning.
FOR THE FULL INTERVIEW WITH ANNETTE SYKES CLICK ON THE LINK
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