E te uri o Hine Raukatauri, e te rika rehe, te rika tōhau nui.
Hoea tō waka ki te pae o maumahara, hai taumarumaru i tō mātou aroha mutuka kore. Waiho mātou tō tira e taki hotuhotu nei.

On 31 August the world lost an exceptional woman, precious whanauka and darling friend. To name just a few of her accomplishments Tracey was a musician par excellence, a scholar, a teacher, a NZ kayaking representative, a Coast-to-Coaster and a VSA and Raleigh International volunteer. A true citizen of the world she embraced all people, cultures and languages. It was especially moving at Tracey’s service when Pōkarekare ana was sung firstly in Timorese (Tracey had learned enough of their language to teach a group in Timor-Leste) and then in te reo.

It has been eight years since our rōpū completed Aoraki Bound, these days it’s not about the 6am runs and swims, rank poly-props or our camp cooking, it’s about our Aoraki Bound whānau. Two of our rōpū have started families, we have welcomed four tamariki, we’ve had two weddings and now a funeral. (I think Tracey is smiling at that last phrase) While we thought we knew each other after 21 days on Aoraki Bound, the true meaning of whānau continues to be reinforced. We’re tighter than ever and even more so after the tragic loss of our Tracey to te mate pukupuku. Although she won’t be making our annual hui this year to the Milford Track we know she will be there ā-wairua.

At Labour Weekend 2013, we planted a Kupe 2008 biota node at Te Kōhaka o Tūhaitara, near Woodend Beach. Tracey’s good works continue with the donation of over $1000 from her friends and whānau to the Trust (Our biota node/area is a planting of native species, which is part of the long-term restoration of the Tūhaitara Coastal Reserve. See Te Kōhaka o Tūhaitara http://www.tuhaitarapark.org.nz for more information or if you want to lend a hand). Tracey, ko koe te takata, you are our heroine we are so proud and privileged to have known you.

“Seize the day my friends. Think of what brought us together. Feel the sun on your back and the smile on your face. Spend time in beautiful places. Love your body!” – Tracey Wemyss.

Nāhaku, nā Kupe 2008.

Tracey, in front, second from right with her Kupe rōpū on Aoraki Bound in 2008.

Tracey, in front, second from right with her Kupe rōpū on Aoraki Bound in 2008.