25 Nov 2013

Final respects paid to Wellington kaumatua

6:49 pm on 25 November 2013

The tangihanga for a respected Wellington kaumatua has been held following four days of mourning.

Hundreds of mourners gathered at Wellington's Pipitea Marae on Monday to pay their final respects to Te Atiawa elder, Sam Jackson.

Mr Jackson died on 21 November at Wellington Hospital after a short illness. He was 80.

Maori Party co-leader, Te Ururoa Flavell says that Mr Jackson and his wife June upheld the mana and exercised the responsibilities of Te Atiawa to welcome, bless and support all peoples.

The Minister of Maori Affairs, Pita Sharples, says Sam and June went everywhere together, supporting each other in their respective roles.

One mourner, a Greek immigrant, who has known Sam Jackson for more than 20 years, and became close friends with him, described him as one of New Zealand's best Maori ambassadors.

After the public funeral service was held at Pipitea Marae, Mr Jackson's body was taken for a private cremation on Monday afternoon.