9 Aug 2011

Swimming administrator passes away

6:17 am on 9 August 2011

Swimming New Zealand is in mourning with the news of the passing of Wellington's Bill Matson, the vice president of FINA, the sport's ruling body.

Mr Matson, who lived at Waikanae on the Kapiti Coast, passed away yesterday following surgery he underwent at the recent FINA World Championships in Shanghai, China.

Mr Matson had been involved in swimming administration for more than four decades, rising to become a FINA Bureau member since 1996 and Vice President of the International Federation since 2005.

Mr Matson was president and life member of Wellington Swimming Association, past president and life member of Swimming New Zealand and president of the Oceania Swimming Association from its inception in 1991 until 2008.

Last year he was appointed an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for his services to swimming and was also a former board member on the New Zealand Olympic committee.

Mr Matson was only the second New Zealander to be elected to the FINA Congress following the late Artie Shaw.

He was 72.