Topics: Jonah Lomu, Rugby

Emotional public farewell for Jonah Lomu at Eden Park

By Raniera Harrison
  • Auckland

More than 5000 people came together at Eden Park today to attend the public memorial ceremony for Jonah Lomu who passed away 12 days ago. Today gave the public the opportunity to farewell the legend.

Taiaha Hawke (Ngāti Whātua o Ōrākei) says, “It is right that we cry.  This type of legend might not ever be seen ever again.”

People of all cultures came together at the public ceremony to farewell Lomu. It was estimated around 5000 attended today’s ceremony.

Dallas Seymour says, “His life lessons that he left behind for us, exerting everything and giving your all, that's what we learnt from our friend.”

Eric Rush was filled with fond memories and jokes to uplift everone at today’s ceremony.  But it wasn't like that when he heard the news.

He says, “I never spoke to anyone in the first week, I just couldnt get it out I suppose, but it's been a while now.  Time heals everything I guess.”

Lomu’s fellow rugby players performed a spine-tingling rendition of Ka Mate which echoed through the stadium.

“Oh, there was a lot of them there and a lot of good All Blacks but we'll never be as good as Jonah,” said Buck Shelford.

Jonah will be farewelled by friends and family in private at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in Māngere tomorrow.

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