Mihi to Sir Edmund from the King
Office of King Tuheitia
tau te kapua pouri ki runga i o maungatapu o te Ao
Kua mahue mai e tū mokemoke kau ana, e Koro
Ka rongo te ao, ka rongo te pō
Takoto mai rā i roto i ngā ringaringa o te Te Ariki
Your sacred mountains of the world are
shrouded in clouds of sadness
Left standing alone in sorrow,
Your great loss will be felt throughout the world
Rest in peace in the hands of the Lord
Today all New Zealanders will mourn the sad loss of Sir Edmund Hillary who lived to serve humanity with the greatest taonga he could bestow upon us all, the gifts of humility, generosity and aroha to his people inspiring so many young people throughout the world to higher achievement.
I wasn’t born on that eventful day he and his Sherpa friend Tenzing conquered Mt Everest but I grew up like so many young people in the wake of the event learning to admire his generosity and aroha, not just to his beloved people in the Himalayas but to mankind. On behalf of my wife and family I extend my deepest condolences to Lady Hillary, the whānau and many friends he touched throughout the world.
It’s just been a little over a year since we lost our Mum and today I remember her fond memories of Sir Edmund as they were both honoured with the Order of New Zealand on Waitangi Day 1987 along with other great New Zealand leaders. As with my mother’s tangi, once again we are all united in the sad loss of this truly remarkable rangatira.
However, it’s also a time to reflect and celebrate the life and achievements of this great New Zealander who showed us all that leadership is about having the boundless courage to go where no man has been before. Sir Edmund wore his deserved acknowledgement with grace and humility. He will be sadly missed by us all.