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3rd loss for Patea Maori Club devastates
(Radio NZ) South Taranaki iwi are mourning the death of the Patea Maori Club Chairman.
John Nyman of Ngati Ruanui, Ngaruahine, and Whanganui iwi descent, died on Tuesday night in Patea.
He is being remembered for dedicating much of his life to the revitalisation of the performing arts and Maori language.
In the 1980s he left the navy and a got a job in the Patea Freezing Works. Two years later the works closed, and he found himself unemployed as did many of his whanau.
Te Tai Hauauru MP Tariana Turia says Mr Nyman became a member of the Patea Maori Club that recorded the song Poi E. It became a runaway hit.
She says Mr Nyman also gave willingly of his knowledge to the Waitangi Tribunal, and gave insights into the history of Ngati Ruanui.
The chairman of Ngati Ruanui iwi in South Taranaki says the death of the Patea Maori Club chairman, is a sad loss for Maoridom especially the kapa haka community.
Ngapari Nui says besides devoting much of his life to revitalising performing arts and Maori language Mr Nyman was also involved in social work in Patea and counselled Maori inmates in prison.
He says Aotearoa Marae near Hawera is now preparing for hundreds of mourners to pay their respects.