Auckland kaumatua Grant Hawke, of Ngati Whatua, says the eulogy to former governor-general Sir Paul Reeves at his tangihanga in Auckland on Thursday was a great tribute to a great man.
Hundreds of mourners attended Sir Paul's state funeral at the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Parnell, including the current Governor-General Sir Anand Satyanand, Prime Minister John Key and many dignitaries from around the country.[image:2782:full]
Mr Hawke says the commentary that was given was very appropriate and depicted him as the man Sir Paul was: dignified and a person of the people, and not of power.
He compared him to another great Maori leader, the late Sir Hugh Kawharu, and says Sir Paul was a champion of the lesser people in society.
Grant Hawke says the difference between him and Sir Hugh, was that Sir Paul supported the underdogs of society helping to advance them and bring the best out of them.
He says Sir Paul will be missed by everyone, and it will be strange going to places where he would often frequent and not to have him there.
Labour MP Parekura Horomia says Sir Paul Reeves was a very humorous man, he was always good for a laugh, and the service reflected him well.
He says although it was a sad occasion, it was also an opportunity to reflect on some of the lighter moments of his life.
Mr Horomia says it was interesting to listen to Sir Paul's daughter who spoke of the great sense of humour her father had which helped to put people at ease.