Letters to the editor
For those unable to be at the airport on Friday to greet Ron Perano, Bill Campbell and some very proud boys off the plane, you missed something very special, touching and even a little emotional.
Ron and Bill emerged first into the terminal building to a loud round of applause from mostly family and friends and other passengers not part of the event, but overjoyed and a de facto part of the event anyway.
Ron shed a tear of joy, surprise, satisfaction or exhaustion (or all) and was elated at the small but welcoming crowd gathered to celebrate what is a truly historical event. The boys, proudly wearing their school blazers, emerged from the plane, shed jackets and performed a haka. It was special and the assembled crowd stood silently in awe at the pride and passion these guys showed. More swallows and tears, I suspect.
I dare say these guys know not what a historic event they have taken part in at the Diamond Jubilee. One not to be repeated in our lifetimes at least – nor your kids or even grandkids. I sure hope this is recorded somewhere in Marlborough's history books.
It's this sort of "can do" approach we need to celebrate.
It's also an event we need to showcase.
I am pleased to see the council endorse funding for an events co-ordinator, who will pick up on these things and make them reasons for community involvement (albeit a non-paying event). I remain hopeful that this new position within council will see any event is worth jumping on for regional PR, if nothing else.
Thank you so much to Peter Chapman for keeping me in the loop regarding Friday's Swiftsure crew arrival home. Wow!
I am absolutely passionate about "youth mentoring" run by Nancy Sherwood, so it was great to be at something so positive regarding Marlborough's young men and not just supporting Nancy with trying to obtain funding for our underprivileged children.
I feel sure that if Ron Perano has a bucket list, there would be very little on it. It is men like him and Bill Campbell whose passion, getting in, quietly doing their bit with integrity, lifting others as they climb, that we (Marlborough and New Zealand) need more of. This is about true grit and determination and what this country was founded on.
They are not so much extraordinary men but simple, honest men doing extraordinary things. They will have no regrets, I am sure, as they have set a great example for all to follow of "paying it forward". I had hoped and prayed that someone would have organised a welcome home haka for these wonderful men – heroes, champions, warriors – but was completely taken aback and speechless to witness them performing their own stunning haka. The energy, pride, spirit and passion with which this was performed was incredible – they did themselves and their school proud.
All who witnessed the homecoming will dine out on it for years to come. Sadly, those who were not able to attend missed something unique. It is moments like this that make me feel proud to be a Kiwi.
Rates restraintI very nearly choked on my cuppa reading your story on the Marlborough District Council rates increase ["Rise mainly for infrastructure – mayor", Express, June 7], especially Mr Sowman's comments about the "restraint shown by councillors and the community" and the fact that most of the rate rise "is going on water, sewerage and roads – the things councils normally do".
It seems Mr Sowman doesn't read the letters column in this paper because that is exactly what his ratepayers have been telling him to do for a long time – stick to core services.
Shame the mayor hasn't taken his own advice about restraint, though. I wonder what difference that $6 million for the theatre would make to our budget right now.
Redwoodtown School in Blenheim will celebrate its centenary on the weekend of September 14 to 16 this year.
A weekend of activities has been organised and all ex-pupils, teachers or others associated with the school are encouraged to register for this important celebration. Further details can be obtained, either online at redwoodtown. school.nz or by contacting the school office 90 Cleghorn St, Blenheim 7201, or calling 035785200.
This is your chance to catch up with old friends, enjoy Marlborough hospitality and see how far education has progressed. Registrations close on August 10.
- The Marlborough Express