The Kiwi woman who survived the horrific Huntly crash which killed her partner and sons loved returning home from Australia.

Belinda Williams and her daughter, Tessa, 9, were pulled from the wreckage of their rented silver Sedan after it collided with a Mark Grey Carriers truck on State Highway 1 at Huntly yesterday afternoon.

But her partner Stephen Phillips, 54, and sons, aged 14 and 12, died instantly.

Phillips was First Violinist for the Queensland Symphony Orchestra.

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The family had left their home in Loganlea, Queensland, on Monday morning for a reunion with Williams' New Zealand family. They had intended to be here for two weeks.

Williams and her daughter were in a stable condition at Waikato Hospital yesterday.

The family's neighbour, Billy Azad, who was watching their house and caring for their chickens while they were away, said Williams loved going home to New Zealand.

She always said "the fresh air of New Zealand is something different".

Phillips is from Australia while Williams was born here.

Azad said neighbours who lived in the small cul-de-sac where the family lived was in a state of shock after hearing of the crash.

"They were just like an extended family," Azad said. "There are 11 houses on our street and we all know each other.

"They were the kindest people ... I never heard them raise their voices even at their kids. It has always been soft and gently. It was an example to most parents."

Williams was often seen driving her mint condition Combi van and would often pick up the kids on the street and take them to the bus stop.

Crash victim Stephen Phillips, 54, was First Violinist for the Queensland Symphony Orchestra. Photo / News Ltd
Crash victim Stephen Phillips, 54, was First Violinist for the Queensland Symphony Orchestra. Photo / News Ltd

Meanwhile, her daughter, Tessa, was at Azad's house every second day playing dolls with his 6-year-old daughter.

"She's good mannered, always looking after my little kids.

"And on our street because it's a cul-de-sac, [the two boys] were the older kids compared to the rest of them and every time they would play and a car was coming they would move them aside. Or if somebody fell over they would tend to the kids.

"If there was scratches they would stop them crying. They were kind-hearted kids."

Azad had been trying to get in touch with Williams' family in New Zealand to see how the mother and daughter were doing, but had been told Williams' mother was with them at Waikato Hospital.

Other family members were also gathering at the hospital as many had already planned to travel back for the reunion.

Queensland Symphony Orchestra chairman Greg Wanchap said Phillips' death was an enormous loss for the orchestra.

"Stephen's been with the QSO for probably 30 years and he's family," he told the Herald.

"It was just on Saturday night when we performed in the concert hall in Brisbane, both he and Belinda played...

"He was an absolutely delightful person. He and she are such a fabulous pair of people."

Phillips was also an organist and longstanding member of the choir for St Gregory's Traditional Latin Mass Community in Brisbane.

St Gregory's chaplain Fr Scot Armstrong said Phillips was a very talented musician and nice man.

"He was very obliging. He had a very willing-to-help attitude."