Joanne Giles, 60, was considered a "mum" to dozens of people.
The CTV host was also a former national athlete, political hopeful and mother of four.
She was commonly known as Jo and is survived by her children Anna, Samantha, Olivia and James.
Jo represented New Zealand in pistol shooting at two Oceania Games and a World Cup.
She was New Zealand's first female jockey to race against men, and competed in motorsport and rock 'n' roll competitions.
She was a candidate for ACT New Zealand in 2005 and was a mayoral candidate in the 2007 Christchurch local body election.
Her children said she had an empathetic nature and always had the time to listen to other peoples' problems.
''She would always say 'a problem shared is a problem halved', even though she led a very busy life. She always had time for her family and would have done anything for us kids,'' they said.
Jo was always laughing and was often the centre of attention or the life of the party.
She always had ''something on the go'' and lived life to the fullest.
Jo constantly challenged herself and liked to break down sterotypes by excelling in male-dominated sports or activities, her children said.
Jo was a business development manager at CTV and was last seen in the building by a fellow employee at 12.48pm.