Strong crowd farewells ex AB Kevin Skinner

11:59, Jul 25 2014
Gary Whetton/Skinner Funeral
FAREWELL: Gary Whetton was among a strong turn out for former All Black Kevin Skinner's funeral.

Former All Black captain Gary Whetton was among an estimated 100-strong crowd gathered in West Auckland this afternoon for the funeral of rugby great Kevin Skinner.

Skinner, who died on July 21 aged 86, played 20 tests and 63 games for the All Blacks during an international career from 1949 to 1956, often defined by his comeback appearances in the series win against South Africa in 1956.

A service was held at the Holy Cross Catholic Church in Henderson where Whetton recalled a friendship that dated back some 20 years.

Kevin Skinner
LEGEND DIES: Former All Blacks hard man and one-time New Zealand heavyweight champion Kevin Skinner, pictured in 1956, died this week.

"He was great in the community and always had a smile on his face," he said.

"He loved talking to people and his death is a real loss to New Zealand.

"He never skited about his achievements. He was a very gentle man but very determined."

Skinner is survived by his wife Laurie and family.

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