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Ed Sheeran

Rock of Māori party George Turia dies
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He was the rock behind Māori Party founder Dame Tariana Turia and a quiet co-creator of many of the party’s policies and principles.

Hori George Turia died on Wednesday after a long illness.

Māori Party president Che Wilson says the Whangaehu farmer, from Atihaunui a a Pāpārangi and Ngāti Ruanui, was the partner in life and politics of his wife.

“He was very quiet. He would say something only if he needed to. But he was the litmus test for whatever Auntie Tariana did,” Mr Wilson says.

“There was also his work behind the scenes with their family, with the marae and in the community.

“He was an awesome cook as well so he would be there feeding all the visitors coming into the house.

“They were one of those couples that did everything together. The ideas for a Māori bank in the early 1980s, the Māori Access and Mana schemes to revive the marae, the work to establish Māori health providers and social providers, they were there together. He was a key part of that early development.”

George Turia was raised in Ohakune as one of 15 children.

He met Dame Tariana at a dance as teenagers, and they were married for 58 years, with four children, two whāngai and 28 grandchildren.

The tangi is at Whangaehu, with the funeral service to be held on Saturday at 11am.

 

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