Farewell held for 'special couple' killed in Auckland ram attack

3:08 pm on 24 April 2024

By Shilpy Arora of Stuff

Helge and Gaye Hansen.

Gaye and Helge Hansen. Photo: Supplied / Stuff

The "special couple" who died after being attacked by a ram last week have been remembered at a funeral at Auckland's Kumeu Showgrounds.

Alfred Hansen - known by his middle name Helge - 81, and his wife Gaye Hansen, 82, were found laying dead on their rented farm property in West Auckland on 18 April.

The funeral notice described Helge Hansen as a "dearly loved" father of two, grandfather of five and great-grandfather of three.

On Wednesday, the funeral celebrant said the family's loss, particularly under such unfortunate and tragic circumstances, was heartbreaking.

"It's very hard to come to terms with. We are in disbelief, shock and with heavy hearts."

Helge's daughter Leanne said her dad and step-mother Gaye "absolutely loved their neighbours, their space and their animals".

"Dad and Gaye had just celebrated their 35th wedding anniversary. They had a wonderful happy time together, more together than apart, since Gaye wouldn't drive at all."

Helge's son Antony Hansen said his dad instilled in him a deep appreciation for the Earth and "all its wonders, teaching me the importance of stewardship and sustainable living".

"My dad was not only a kind gentleman but also a beacon of light that lives in the lives of those he touched."

Gaye's daughter Julie shared a quote that Gaye wanted to be read on her funeral service.

"Life should not be a journey to the grave with the intentions of arriving safely in the attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways champagne in one hand and strawberries in the other, bodily thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming... wow. What a ride," she said.

'Caught him off guard'

It was believed an aggressive ram on the couple's property had killed Helge first, and then Gaye when she went to check on him.

Antony Hansen earlier said his father used to run a sheep farm at Port Waikato and knew what he was doing.

"He's an experienced sheep farmer. He knows the potential outcome with rams, as far as being pretty stroppy.

"It [must have] caught him off guard, or he wouldn't be in a paddock with one, because he's always been really cautious around rams."

Antony Hansen said it was "frickin full-on for both of them to get taken out ... under such weird, crazy circumstances".

"You know the reality of ageing parents, but you don't expect anything so radical."

This story was originally published by Stuff.

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