The husband of murdered woman Blessie Gotingco says it's indescribable how awful the past week had been for his family.
"We're just taking it one day at a time," Antonio Gotingco said at a press conference at North Shore police station.
Mr Gotingco said they wanted to thank their fellow countrymen and pay homage to the kind, God-fearing, loving human being that Blessie was.
Flowers at the entrance to Inwards Reserve for Blessie Gotingco. Photo / NZ Herald
"She is the light of our home and without her we will be lost in darkness."
They were currently pretending that everything was okay while they waiting for Blessie's death to sink in, Mr Gotingco said.
"I have known my wife since we were in primary school, when she was a classmate of my sister," Mr Gotingco said.
"She was 20 when we became sweethearts...she was my best friend."
Watch: Man charged with murder
The family were planning on cremating Blessie and holding a public funeral, Mr Gotingco said.
"Everyone is welcome.
"Blessie's coming home now and we will cope the best we can."
The family called the press conference to thank all those who had reached out to them since Blessie's disappearance, Mr Gotingco said.
"We have neighbours we never knew, putting notes in our letterbox, offering to clean our house."
He said he wanted his wife to be remembered like "a symbol to prevent other unnecessary crimes like this".
Blessie's oldest son John said his mother's death was a "national tragedy".
Police search the cemetery on Eskdale road in Birkdale. Photo / Chris Gorman
How it unfolded
• Saturday: Blessie Gotingco fails to return home from her shift at Tower Insurance
• Sunday: Her daughter discovers her missing at 3.15am, and finds her cellphone and other belongings near their home
• Monday: Police cordon off the Eskdale Rd cemetery at 9pm
• Tuesday: A man is arrested at Monte Cassino Place. Mrs Gotingco's body removed from the cemetery
• Yesterday: A man appears in court charged with murder and is granted name suppression
Watch: Body found, arrest made
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