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Edward “Tiger” O’Brien

Posted by SC Comments Off on Edward “Tiger” O’Brien

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Tiger O’Brien was a broad-chested nuggety fellow, of sandy compexion. Unlucky in love, he was a bachelor most of his life. When 41 he married Elizabeth Murray, but the marriage did not last long.

A talented member of the Piha surf club, especially on the surf ski and there is still an iconic photo of Tiger riding a big wave on his ski in the clubhouse. He was in the Piha crew that won the firstand  national surf boat championship at Lyall Bay and was second in the march past. He gained a Distinguished Service Award from the club in 1984 and was made a life member of the club in 1987.

 Tiger had a bulldozer and was a centre of anything that involved moving earth at Piha, and regularly had to pull Mrs Ketterer’s bridge out of the creek after a flood had gone through. He bulldozed the tennis courts and they are still going strong over 60 years later.

He built his first a little house on a steep section near the bottom of Seaview Road. He had access to a supply of bricks and you have never come across a place with more brick paths in your life. Then he finished his days at a little house in Shadey Lane.

Tiger was born on 11 February 1906 to Edward OBrien to Samuel Taty O’Brien, a farmer, and Frances Ruth O’Brien (born Laing).  Tiger had long roots at Piha as his Dad had worked at the Mill and as a boy he used to walk in through the forest from Auckland during the school holidays.

His sister, Hazel O’Brien, married Charlie Curtice so he was uncle to Rodger and Bruce. He died on 3 January 1994 at North Shore Hospital of heart disease.

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