A Samoan family is in mourning after a talented and loving father of five died in a car crash.
Sakaria Poutasi, 39, died at the scene after the car he was driving collided with another vehicle on Clevedon-Kawakawa Bay Rd in south east Auckland on September 15 just before 9am.
His wife of 18 years, early childhood teacher Pauline Faalua Rasch Poutasi, said Poutasi loved his family, going fishing, playing music, going to church and eating her homemade banana cake.
Poutasi leaves behind his wife and their five children - 18-year-old Benjamin, their daughter Ina'ocosta, 16, Vavega, 12, Living, 9, and John, 4.
He and Pauline had also adopted their 17-year-old niece Graceleen.
Pauline said the kids were lonely without him.
"He really encouraged and challenged our children to go to school and get better jobs, to be better than him," she said.
Family, colleagues and other community members farewelled Poutasi at a large funeral service yesterday at their Mangere church.
Pauline said people had rallied around to help the mourning family, delivering flowers and food, helping with decorations and even driving.
Pauline said she was holding up after the loss of her companion of 18 years, with whom she moved to New Zealand from Samoa in 2009: "I'm getting there. I have friends and family here from New Zealand, Samoa and Australia."
She remembered her husband as a man with a good sense of humour who loved to share his musical talents with children.
"He loved his kids and his wife, and he loved to eat. He loved to keep me busy by making him pineapple pie and banana cake."
A woman whose property was near the crash site understood a car had come from Kawakawa Bay and rounded a bend before losing control, hitting a bank, getting back onto the road before crashing into an oncoming car.