Whangarei engineer Malcolm Hawthorn has been remembered as a wonderful, caring man, who dedicated his life to helping the community and developing engineering and young engineers.

Mr Hawthorn, a retired director of Hawthorn Geddes Engineers and Architects, and a former Whangarei district councillor, died suddenly on Sunday. Mr Hawthorn was also a fellow of the Engineering NZ (formerly the Institute of Professional Engineers of NZ).

He was also a long-time member of the Whangarei Lions.

James Blackburn, a director of Hawthorn Geddes, said Mr Hawthorn had put a tremendous effort into working for the community throughout his career - even into his retirement - as well as his commitment to engineering and mentoring young engineers.

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Mr Blackburn said Mr Hawthorn was widely recognised for this work, including being made a fellow of ENZ.

''That was not just for his engineering skills and achievements, but also his work in the community outside of that work. And his fostering and development of the careers of other engineers,'' he said.

''It was his peers and the much wider community that recognised him.''

Mr Hawthorn was recently involved in the About Time ball clock sculpture that is hoped to be constructed at Whangarei Town Basin.

''Right through his career the community, present and former staff at Hawthorn Geddes, the engineering industry and wider community, will remember him for his work, dedication and as a wonderful, caring man.

Long-time Whangarei District Councillor Crichton Christie sat on the council with Mr Hawthorn from 1992 to 1995.

Mr Christie is holidaying overseas and was saddened to hear Mr Hawthorn had passed away.

"Malcolm was a pleasure to work with on the council. He was practical and with his engineering background he brought to council a sense of professionalism. He was also part of the Whangarei Lions Club with me and will be sorely missed,"
Mr Christie said.

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It was incorrectly stated in Thursday's Northern Advocate that Mr Hawthorn was an architect and director of Hawthorn Geddes.