Farewell to Mugwi
Marlborough sportsman and businessman Haua Detoma (Mugwi) Macdonald died in Wairau Hospital in the early hours of Friday morning, following a fall. He was 84.
The former Maori All Black went on to play professional rugby league in Britain where he met his wife Marjorie. In later years, he excelled at golf.
Mr Macdonald was a key figure in the founding of the Maori-owned Wakatu Inc, sitting on its board from the company's establishment in 1977 until 2004. He retained an interest in the company which revered him as a kaumatua.
Past chairman Steve Marshall wrote in a Wakatu newsletter that Mr Macdonald had worried the incorporporation had become so big and professional it had outgrown him.
"It took some of us quite some time to persuade him that one of the reasons that Wakatu had grown without the speed wobbles that many companies experience when they grow, was the very fact that we had people like him on the board who would make sure that we didn't move too fast," Mr Marshall said.
He put many hours into supporting new trainees in the company.
Mr Macdonald's funeral service was held this morning at Wairau Pa.
He will be buried at the Maori Island urupa (cemetery).
He is survived by his wife Marjorie, four children and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
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The Marlborough Express