The kapa haka world is mourning the death of Pimia, or Nen Wehi, as she was better known.
Mrs Wehi, from Te Aitanga a Mahaki, Te Whanau a Apanui, Rongowhakaata, Te Whakatohea, Ngati Ruapani, was 80.
Waatea News she and her husband, Ngapo, were the driving force behind four time national kapa haka champion Waka Huia, which they established in the early 1980s when they moved to Auckland.
Trevor Maxwell from Rotorua's Ngati Rangiwewehi group says Mrs Wehi dedicated her life to keeping the traditional Maori performing arts alive.
Mrs Wehi has now been taken back to her ancestral marae, Waihirere, just outside of Gisborne, after spending time at Hoani Waititi marae in West Auckland.