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Farewell to Jack Kingston 1918-2017

Jack Kingston was one of Piha’s oldest and longest dwelling residents, when he died on 9 November 2017 aged 99 years. He has been at Piha so long, the corner of the road by his driveway is known locally as “Kingstons’ corner”. A very community-minded man, he was also a thorough going gentleman and  will be very sadly  [ Read More ]

Bob (Neville) John McNeil 1935 – 2016

The death occurred on 11 June 2016 of Bob NcNeil and he was farewelled at the St Mary’s Catholic Church in Avondale on Thursday 17 June. Bob was a West Auckland boy through and through. Though born at Coromandel, he came to Avondale as a child and grew up there, attending St Mary’s School. He  [ Read More ]

Death of Jack de Bazin

Sadly, Jack de Bazin died on Friday 18th September. Jack and his wife Ngaire lived in Rayner Road for years and were at the hub of community life. Jack was a founding member and the third “sub-officer” of the Piha volunteer fire service. “Sub officer” was the name given to the Chief of the Piha  [ Read More ]

Marc Mateo farewelled in Domain

A large crowd gathered in the Domain on Friday 19 June to farewell local man Marc Anthony Mateo who died accidentally the previous weekend. Eldest son of Bev, partner of Debalina Rose, father of Tiger, and brother of Phillip, Rachel, Todd and Emily. Marc was a talented cinematographer and a large number of friends and  [ Read More ]

Two bereavements at Piha

Piha suffered two bereavements of long term locals in the last week. Larry Gibson, former Piha Bowling Club president and stalwart and extremely hard worker for the club, died in the weekend. He made an immense contribution to the club and always gave a warm welcome to members and visitors. Larry was in the tradition of  [ Read More ]

Ron Cooper 1927-2012

Ron Cooper, a loyal and long-standing member of Piha Surf Life Saving Club, died at Taupaki Gables on 15 September 2012. Ron was born on 7 April 1927, grew up at Smale Street, Pt Chevalier, and went to Pasadena and Kowhai Schools. Father Don worked in the production of the Auckland Star and his mother Margaret was  [ Read More ]

Joan Kingston 1919-2012

It is sad to record the death of Joan Kingston, aged 92, revered long-term resident of Piha and devoted partner of Jack. Joan was born Heather Joan Alice Cowie on 23 October 1919 and had a childhood in Auckland, attending Newton Central School. When she left school at 13 she worked in various textile and clothing businesses  [ Read More ]

Death of Lance Watt

Lance Clyde Watt died on Sunday 8 April. Until recently, Lance had  lived at his family’s home at the end of Glen Esk Road, Piha, then ill health led to his going to live at the Ranfurly Home in Epsom. Lance was the son of Piha’s poet, Lorna Watt, and plumber, Lex Watt. The Watts bought the  [ Read More ]

Doug Pople 1931 – 1999

Doug Pople died suddenly in August 1999, aged 68 years. Doug was the son of Rachel and Charlie Pople who ran the boarding house and built the Piha Store in 1945. He was about five when the family started camping at Piha. Charlie Pople lost his fruit business after the government took over fruit importing,  [ Read More ]

Death of Bruce Murray

The death occured yesterday 4 January of Bruce Murray, a very long term resident of Piha. Bruce’s family had long-standing connections with Piha, having taken over the Piha Store from the Crichtons in the early 1950s and run it for a number of years. Bruce was one of three Murray children; his brother was Graham and  [ Read More ]

Dr Newton Ernest Wickham “Wicky” 1917-2011

The death occurred on 5 December of Dr Newton Ernest Wickham “Wicky”, a very long-standing bach owner at North Piha, and a devoted friend of Piha. Wicky was born in 1917 at Stratford, Taranaki, but moved to Auckland with his family as a child of 11. He is a notable Albertian, having attended Mt Albert  [ Read More ]

Myrtle Gardiner 1915-2011

Myrtle Gardiner, a very long-term bach owner and lover of Piha, died on Saturday 22 October, in her 97th year, peacefully at her home on Great Barrier Island. She had enjoyed watching the Friday night rugby with her friend Coral Broadhead, but never got to the bottle of French champagne she had waiting in the  [ Read More ]

More tributes to Peter Byers, surfing legend

http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/western-leader/5784500/Farewell-to-Kiwi-surfing-pioneer   And here’s another photo of Peter that celebrates his involvement with fishing at Piha. It shows a group of young surf club members with their catch at Pakiti (mostly schnapper), front row, Buddy Cox, Gordon Barker, Graeme Webber, Peter Byers, Murray Bray, and Peter’s brother, Bruce Byers “Cheetah”.

Peter Byers 1940-2011

The death occurred on 8 October of Peter John Byers, aged 71. Peter was the oldest son of John and Yvonne Byers, Yvonne being a descendant of the Ussher family which settled Piha in the 1860s. Peter grew up and lived all his life at Piha. His father was an apiarist at Piha and later  [ Read More ]

Mona Farndon 1914-2011

Mona Evelyn (Lisa) Farndon died on 18 August at the Everill Orr Hospital, aged 97. Born at Mt Eden on 25 May 1914, Mona had the longest history of Piha of anyone. She was born while her father, Jack Shaw, worked at the Piha sawmill and her early childhood was spent at the Shaws’ mill house in the  [ Read More ]

Cyril Murphy 1930-2011

Friends at Piha have recently learned that Cyril Eric Murphy had died peacefully at home in Turangi on 23 May 2011. He was born 19 August 1930 at Hawera so died just short of his 81st birthday. For 30 years, Cyril was a well known figure at Piha before he moved to Turangi in 1996.  [ Read More ]

Betty Hanson 1916 – 2010

Betty Hanson 20 November 1916 – 9 June 2010 It is with great sadness that we record the death of Betty Hanson,. Betty had a deep and lasting love of Piha and a peerless history of commitment and service to the community.  Betty, whose maiden name was Crump, came to Piha via Karekare which she  [ Read More ]

Geoff Hall 1925-2010

Geoffrey Neil Hall 9 August 1925 – 18 April 2010   One of the Piha Surf Club’s most loyal and long-serving members passed away recently.  Geoff Hall had held virtually every officer position in the Piha Surf Club and always attended anniversary club get-togethers. He was one of only three surviving members of the legendary  [ Read More ]

Lily Webber 1910-2003

Lily Webber 1910-26 June 2003   One of Piha’s oldest personalities died on 26 June and a large crowd of Piha devotees gathered at her funeral to celebrate a long and joyful life. Lily Webber was diminutive but radiated enjoyment of life. She greatly loved Piha and in her latter years could spend a whole  [ Read More ]

John Hanson 1941-2002

John Stanley Crump Hanson 5 May 1941 – 18 September 2002  A devoted supporter of the surf lifesaving movement in New Zealand, John was the son of Betty and Bill Hanson of Garden Road. The husband of Caroline, father of two sons and grandfather of eight grandchildren, John spent many years in the Nelson region  [ Read More ]

Jackie Jenkins 1913-2003

Jackie Jenkins 25 September 1913- 25 September 2003 Members of three Piha clubs – bowling club, surf club and RSA – were saddened by the death on 25 September 2003 of Jackie Jenkins, aged 80. A quiet, self-effacing man, with an engaging sense of humour, Jackie had a sporting history as distinguished as any of  [ Read More ]

Jack Diamond 1912-2001

J T Diamond 21 June 1912 – 20 February 2001  Jack Diamond, the pioneer historian of the West Coast, died earlier this year, aged 88. Although he had no academic degrees or formal training, Jack was the inspiration and mentor for following generations of local historians, his encyclopedic knowledge freely shared with younger writers. When  [ Read More ]

Doris Pearce 1911-2005

Doris Margaret Pearce 17 December 1911 – 9 May 2005 Doris Pearce died in her 94th year. She came out to Piha on the Saturday of Anzac weekend, sat and looked at the Lion Rock from the veranda of her bach, heard the surf and went to bed after dinner and didn’t really wake up.  [ Read More ]

Don Wright 1915-2003

Don ‘E.D.’Wright 1915-9 November 2003 Don Wright, one of the icons of surf lifesaving, died on Sunday 9 November. He was on his way to his regular Grey Watch surf patrol when his van went off the Piha Road. At 88, Don was the oldest active member of Piha Surf Club and quite possibly the  [ Read More ]

Des Schubert 1921-2001

Desmond Byron Schubert 1921 – 22 April 2002   Desmond Byron Schubert died on 22 April 2001 aged 80 years. His daughter Anna described him at his funeral as a ‘party boy’, ‘always the centre of fun’, a man whose life was split into two halves – the first forty years were the Piha, rugby,  [ Read More ]

Buddy Lucas 1931-2002

Buddy (Fredrick Ross) Lucas 22 May 1931-18 October 2002 There was shock when news spread that Buddy Lucas was seriously ill and disbelief when this fit, vigorous man died. Around 500 gathered at Piha Surf Club to farewell Buddy and watch him to take his last circuit around Piha – this time in the Westpac  [ Read More ]

Bill Hanson 1913 – 2006

Stanley Arthur ‘Bill’ Hanson December 1913 – 16 July 2006 A lover of the West Coast and a loyal participant in Piha’s Anzac Day parades died in July. Bill Hanson loved the annual gathering and wouldn’t have missed it for anything, even though as his health failed he had to get down to Lion Rock  [ Read More ]

Barbara Way 1913-2002

Barbara Agnes Way 6 October 1913 – 1 October 2002   The Ways – Hadyn and Barbara – were among the early bach owners at Piha, their distinctive circular-front roughcast house is still prominent on the lower side of Seaview Road. Barbara was an elegant powerful swimmer and an early woman lifesaver, though Piha surf  [ Read More ]

Des Pike 1922-2007

Arthur Desmond Pike (Des)  1922-17 April 2007   Des Pike, one of Piha’s legends, died on 17 April, aged 84 years. The past President and life member of Piha Surf Life Saving Club and Piha Bowling Club was farewelled by a large turn-out of the Piha community in a memorial service at the Piha Bowling  [ Read More ]