Friends, family gather to say goodbye

13:13, Jun 18 2009
Rest in peace: Pall bearers carry the coffin of popular New Plymouth man Cameron Clow at his funeral attracting 1400 mourners last Saturday.

As a 10-year-old, Cameron Clow bet an aunt $100 he wouldn't have a drink at his 21st he lost the bet.

This was just one of colourful stories told about the 30-year-old New Plymouth athlete as he was farewelled at a funeral attended by an estimated 1400 people at New Plymouth Boys' High School on Saturday.

The committed sportsman and dedicated teacher was killed on June 5 after being hit by a car while training on his bicycle in Bahrain. At the funeral Mr Clow's former school hall echoed with sobs befitting the tragic end to his life but there was plenty of laughter and celebration, too.

Friends Hayden Corkin, Sam Julian and David Sleep remembered a guy who didn't mind a dance on his own, broke marshmallows into tiny pieces and "loved to have a good knees up", even if it meant generously offering up his parents' home.

To his fiancee, Kate Morgan, he was the person who made her smile.

Miss Morgan called Mr Clow her "inspiration, motivation, and support".

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Aunt Yvonne Watts described Cam, Clowie, Mince or Mincer as a "generous person who deserves a generous, personal farewell from the heart".

It seemed not a person in the room was untouched by Mr Clow.

Eric Shaw, principal of Highlands Intermediate, the last New Plymouth school Mr Clow taught at before heading off to Bahrain, talked about Mr Clow's empathy and commitment to his students.

As a teacher, Mr Clow had obviously meant a lot to his pupils. One offered to ask Mr Shaw to give him a pay rise so he wouldn't have to go overseas.

His students in Bahrain sent letters and drawings to the New Plymouth Clow family.

Those children had a chance to say their farewells, too. A service was held in Bahrain simultaneously to the one in New Plymouth.

At the end of both services a slideshow with photos of Mr Clow's life was shown, at the end a passage read:

"Rest in Peace, Cam. You will always be missed".

Taranaki Daily News