In April 2010, I acted as Auctioneer for the Mike Delaney Benefit Dinner in Whangarei. This young man was a 'sure thing' for the Black Sticks; but he suffered an horrific freak accident diving into the surf at Gisborne and breaking a small bone in the top of his neck (the same one that Christopher Reeve – aka Superman – did). This should have left him in a wheelchair, but his fighting spirit and infectious sense of humour have helped him back on his feet and coaching his beloved sport. Mike's had one trip to Germany for stem cell therapy, with amazing results, and with the help of all present he's going back for another. There’s no stopping this man; he’s an inspiration.
On 27 September 2009 the Parliamentary XV played the Tasman Buccaneers at Trafalgar Park in Nelson. Maryan Street and I joined Ken Laban in the commentary box. The team got up 32-20 against a spirited 'golden oldies' team that included legend Todd Blackadder. The day before the Parliamentary Netball team played a local side (the local side won 35-15); all part of a fundraising weekend for the Nelson Environment Centre. About $1,300 was raised and, with a contribution from the Parliamentary Rugby Trust of another $1,000, made it a very successful weekend all round.
For the International Day of Older Persons, I celebrated at an event in Christchurch, with my colleague Nicky Wagner; our community support services turned out in force with informative displays on all manner of issues of interest to our older persons.
Recently I was invited to the upcoming unveiling of a life-sized bronze statute of legendary New Zealand racehorse Phar Lap, to be unveiled in November 2009.
The statue is the initiative of the Phar Lap Charitable Trust. Through their tireless efforts, the Trust has managed to raise $400,000 to properly honour this iconic thoroughbred.
The photo above shows Jo Goodhew (Member for Rangitata) and myself with a smaller version of the statue; it has been loaned to my Office in advance of the official debut of the full size version. If the miniature is anything to go by, the Trust will have a truly remarkable memorial for a truly remarkable horse.
At the launch of "Whats the Plan Stan?" on 10 August 2009.
Here I am at the opening of AUT University North Shore Campus AF Lecture Theatre building on 11 June 2009, standing in for the Prime Minister.
Prime Minister John Key and Associate Local Government Minister John Carter.
Here I am at the Taupo Bay tsunami warning civil defence exercise on 1 May 2009 with Vern Johnston, Jan Turner, Di Sinclair and Wendy Griffith.
Powering down: Northland MP John Carter with Top Energy's former CEO Roger de Bray (left) at the opening of stage two of the Ngawha geothermal power station on 31 January 2009. An evening function at Kaikohe's Mid North Motor Inn was held the same evening to farewell Mr de Bray after 18 years during which he steered the company from the former Bay of Islands Electric Power Board to the unique power generation and lines company it is today. Photo courtesy Northern News.