Taiwan crash claims Chch man

JOELLE DALLY
Last updated 05:00 09/04/2014
Tim Pennington
Tim Pennington

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A Christchurch man has been killed in a motorcycle crash in Taiwan, within a week of his first wedding anniversary.

Tim Pennington, 26, died in an intensive care ward after the crash on Monday.

He and his wife, Sara, moved to Taiwan last September, to pursue his dream of teaching English. They were believed to be living in Taichung.

The couple married last April and their anniversary was due this weekend.

Sara Pennington had also recently secured part-time work in Taiwan.

The second-youngest of five children, Tim Pennington attended Riccarton High School and University of Canterbury, where in 2012 he won the Huayu scholarship, which included a year of paid study at the National Normal University in Taiwan.

Speaking from the family's Christchurch home last night, Daniel Pennington, 28, said his brother was "a kind and generous young man". "He was very humorous, very friendly and very honouring of other people. He was easy to get along with and especially devoted to his wife during their time over there."

His brother was good at music, in particular the drums.

"He'll be dearly missed."

He previously attended the Chinese Church in Greers Rd, where he met his wife.

Living in Taiwan was "a challenge" for the couple, Daniel Pennington said.

Their parents, Karen and Eric, were flying to Taiwan.

The family was yet to make funeral arrangements. He did not wish to discuss the crash.

Prayer vigils were held last night at the Chinese Church and at St Timothy's Anglican Church, where Tim Pennington's friend Andy Spence is youth pastor.

Spence, 26, flatted with Tim Pennington in Christchurch while he was studying Chinese.

He said his friend "always wanted to teach people English".

"It was his passion," Spence said.

A prayer vigil was also planned today at his parents' church, South West Baptist.

Numerous friends have posted messages of support online to Sara Pennington, whose family live in Taiwan.

"Thoughts and prayers to you and the family," said one.

A Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade spokeswoman said it had been advised of Pennington's death "as the result of a motorcycle accident".

"We have offered our condolences and consular assistance to his wife in Taiwan," she said.

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- The Press

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