Gordon McKay grinned from ear to ear last Saturday at the thought of spending a day in the sun on his motorcycle.
Taking part in the Round the Mountain Toy Run was a charity ride he was passionate about but it was to be his last.
Yesterday the daughters of Mr McKay, the 68-year-old motorcyclist who died near Normanby Bridge last weekend, spoke to the Taranaki Daily News of a father who dedicated his life to his family.
"Dad really taught us the importance of family and to really look out for each other," Paula McKay said. "We knew all of our first and second cousins growing up and have always kept in touch."
Mr McKay and his wife, Helyn, married in Auckland 46 years ago where they raised their daughters, Catherine, Paula and Amanda. The couple moved to Taranaki four years ago to be closer to Catherine and their grandchildren.
"Dad would travel all over the country in the weekends to help (grandson) Kade with his bike so it just made sense for them to move closer," Catherine said.
"Dad being a mechanic meant he knew a lot and Kade never missed a start line with him around."
The daughters said the image of motorcyclists hasn't been positive in the days since the crash but their father is an example of a "respectable, polite and honest guy" who enjoyed fast things.
"He would do anything to help anybody," Catherine said.
A mechanic by trade, Mr McKay was semi-retired and used to spend his spare time exploring parts of the region on his motorcycle.
"He would quite often say he was going to make the most of the weather and pop up to Mokau for a coffee," she said.
Mr McKay's funeral is being held today, the day after Waitara's Kelly Reardon's funeral, who also died in the same crash.
- Taranaki Daily News
Will Aaron Cruden's omission hurt or help the All Blacks?Related story: Senior All Blacks 'pretty disappointed' in Cruden