Mourners flock to farewell dead hunter

By -
James Dodds. Photo / Supplied
James Dodds. Photo / Supplied

More than 1000 family, friends, fellow mountain bikers and motocross riders farewelled Rotorua mountain biking legend James Dodds in Rotorua this afternoon.

Mr Dodds, 30, was shot dead during a hunting expedition in Waikite Valley, south of near Rotorua, on Friday.

Police are investigating the death but say it is too early to say whether charges will be laid.

Mr Dodds' hunting companion Henry Worsp raised the alarm following the shooting. Mr Worsp attended today's funeral. Friends have said he "absolutely shattered'' by the death of his friend but was determined to attend today's ceremony.

About 100 mountain bikers took special ride this morning in honour of the man many knew as 'Dodzy'. Afterwards, about 69 met in town and rode to the Redwoods where they created a guard of honour along the dirt roadway to the sails.

Some were in suits and some were wearing normal mountain biking gear. The riders were led by Rotorua district councillor and lifetime Rotorua Mountain Bike Club member Dave Donaldson.

Loud revving and lots of smoke could been seen as about a dozen friends of Mr Dodds rode up Long Mile Rd on motocross bikes and up the track to the sails ahead of the hearse.

Family members and friends spoke about Mr Dodds and the impact on thousands of people's lives.

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