Deaths stun community

Last updated 16:10 11/12/2013

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Two men who were found dead after their boat capsized in Kaikoura last Tuesday were mates who went fishing together almost every day, the owner of a Kaikoura pub says.

The bodies of Kaikoura men Robin Reinke, 79, and Ronald Monk, 75, were found in Whaler's Bay, on the Kaikoura peninsula. Mr Reinke's body was found on Wednesday about 11am, not far from where Mr Monk's body was found on Tuesday morning.

New Commercial Hotel owner Trish Smith said Mr Reinke and Mr Monk were both well liked and had many friends in Kaikoura.

They went out together almost every day to get crayfish or to go fishing, she said.

Mr Monk had shown up at the Commercial Hotel on Brighton St at 4pm every day since she had bought the business 12 years ago, Ms Smith said.

She described him as a very quiet person who liked to have a couple of jugs of DB beer and put a bet on the horse races.

He'd sit there with all his mates for a couple of hours then go home.

"He was a two-jug man," she said.

Mr Reinke used to come in every Thursday as part of the social club and would have two small glasses of cider.

She and the Kaikoura community was devastated.

"We're all just really, really gutted," she said. "It's really hard."

Alister Broughan of Kaikoura had known both men all his life.

"They were bloody great guys," he said.

Mr Reinke was a commercial fisherman before he retired while Mr Monk worked as a plumber and drainlayer. Mr Reinke was a real toiler and was always out in the garden or out fishing when the seas were fine, as they were on the day of the tragedy.

"We just don't know what happened."

The Kaikoura community was in shock, he said.

A police spokeswoman said both deaths have been referred to the coroner.

Police had established the pair set off about 7am last Tuesday to check crayfish pots in a small 4.9m boat.

A member of the public found the semi-submerged boat in Whaler's Bay about 8.15am.

The boat was found stern-up, which indicated it had gone down nose first, she said.

Police and the coastguard were alerted shortly after 9am.

Mr Monk's body was found about 9.30am.

He was wearing a lifejacket but it had not been inflated.

The men's boat was towed to shore for examination by police investigators and Maritime New Zealand.

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- © Fairfax NZ News


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