My people use the phrase a true Mensch to honour our Sir Rob.
A person of honour and integrity.
A person to admire and emulate.
Sir Rob has been on the Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Whai Rawa Board since its inception.
His contribution is far too large to be referred to just in mere words.
For all of us who have sat at the Whai Rawa Board table those clear, points of view were always there when they were needed to right the waka, and to make sure that where we were sailing was only always for the betterment of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei.
Sir Rob’s contribution will be sadly missed by us all, especially by me.
The voice at the end of the phone discussing all the issues of the day, providing clarity as to what to sweat about and what not to has gone forever.
Sir Rob was foremost a family man.
A person who strived for a better Aotearoa.
A person who wanted to and did help Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei prosper.
A person who was passionate about everything and anything he set his mind to help.
I was lucky to spend some time with Sir Rob last week.
I was looking forward and praying I would do so again.
That will not be. That is my loss.
All of us will miss him.
We all will never forget him.
I refer you all to the Listener article that Sir Rob wrote last week.
Let us all do everything we can and more, to make sure the kauri continue to grow.
And that our native birds continue to sing for evermore.
For us, for our whanau, for our mokopuna.
And every day forward for Sir Rob.
To Lady Jennie and family, we wish you all a long life.
Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei Whai Rawa