The community is invited to attend a remembrance planting at Lady Raiha Reserve in Ngaruawahia this Sunday, 4 August.
The planting will allow whanau, friends and Ngaruawahia community to remember the tragic loss of two Ngaruawahia children, Jayden Nerihana Tepu and Moareen Rameka. Sadly, both children lost their lives after being struck by a train, Jayden in 2002 and Moareen in March 2018.
Council have organised for two beautiful kowhai trees to be planted either side of Great South Rd, one each to remember Jayden and Moareen.
Community Connections Manager Megan May says having the opportunity to have a physical place to remember Jayden and Moareen was something their whanau and the wider community both wanted and needed. “It’s such a tragedy to lose young people to the rail bridge. Having a physical place to remember them by will hopefully bring peace to their families and the community.”
KiwiRail have donated a bench seat which will serve as a resting spot for those who come to remember. Council will unveil a waka sign which will tell the story of the kowhai and its significance to the area.
“Tragic events like these are terribly distressing for everyone, especially when young children are involved,” KiwiRail Executive General Manager Operations Siva Sivapakkiam says.
“Our drivers, local people and the whole KiwiRail whanau felt the loss of the children personally. Our thoughts are with the families and community as they seek to honour and to remember the children at this time.”
The community planting next month will include karakia by local kaumatua and a moment’s silence for Moareen and Jayden. The community will have the opportunity to get involved in the planting. Kai will be shared at the conclusion of the event.
Those attending are asked to bring a spade and garden gloves and to wear appropriate clothing for the weather (closed in shoes, a rain/wind jacket if needed) and bring hi – vis if you have them.
Sunday 4 August, 10am-12noon, meet at Lady Raiha Reserve, Ngaruawahia. There will be plenty of parking along Regent St.
For more information please contact:
Senior Communications & Engagement Advisor
Waikato District Council
027 706 5776