Death Of A National Hero
Prime Minister Helen Clark said today that she was very deeply shocked and saddened at the terrible news of the violent death of Sir Peter Blake on the Blakexpedition yacht, the Seamaster, in Brazil.
“Sir Peter is a national hero. The deepest sympathies of all New Zealanders will go to his wife and family and to his crew who have also endured a horrifying experience,” Helen Clark said.
“Barely three weeks ago I was with Sir Peter on the Seamaster in the Amazon region and was hugely impressed with the work he was doing. Many New Zealanders have had an introduction to that work, from the television reports in recent weeks.
“I am appalled that murderers have taken away Sir Peter’s life when he had so much to give through his passion for the waters of the world and the life they nurture
“Sir Peter had an amazing record of achievement. He was not only a great yachtsman, he was also a passionate environmentalist and a leader.
“He was an inspiration to all New Zealanders and we will all feel a tremendous sense of loss on hearing this terrible news.
“I have requested that all New Zealand flags be flown at half mast as a mark of respect and that commemoration books be made available throughout the country so that New Zealanders can express their grief and condolences to the family.
“The government will be discussing with the family and their representatives the arrangements for an appropriate memorial event,” Helen Clark said.