The family of a lovable tradie are preparing to give him a memorable send off after he tragically died after a fire at his home in Pukekohe.
Peter Vile, 56, suffered severe burns at the blaze on Crosbie Rd on May 20 and later died in hospital.
His son Bob Howard 'Vile told the Herald his dad brightened up a room.
"He always wanted to be the life of the party," Howard 'Vile said.
"He was a bit of a troublemaker, in an innocent sense."
Vile loved chatting to people and just wanted to make others happy, he said.
"He always had the last laugh. He was an absolute hoot.
"He loved to have fun. He never grew up."
At first it had been difficult to believe what happened, as a motorbike and car enthusiast Vile had always bounced back from any scrapes or knocks, he said.
But he had suffered burns to 80 per cent of his body in the fire and at the hospital his family were told he was not going to make it.
"There was only so much they could do," Howard 'Vile said.
He said goodbye to his dad at Middlemore Hospital that day.
"I hope he heard me."
A commercial builder by trade, Vile could be counted on to help others, he said.
"He was involved in a little bit of everything. He wasn't scared to get his hands dirty."
The 56-year-old worked at Vernon and Vazey Truck Parts Ltd across the road from his three-bedroom home.
The company has helped Howard 'Vile move his dad's belongings, a lifetime of memories.
"They took it in their stride, had a few beers and got it done.
"I just want to get across a big thank you, from both myself and dad."
There were no words to describe how wonderful the community outpouring of support had been, he said.
Vile had recently lost a lot of mates.
His close-knit friends from the race track included Lawrence Webster, also known as Laurie, who died while racing at Meremere Dragway earlier this year.
"He was distraught when that happened."
But Howard 'Vile said he liked to think Vile would be having a party "up there" with not only Webster, but good mates Sam Smith and Carl Vazey.
And he was preparing to make sure his send off on the ground was also a party.
People who attended the service were welcome to arrive in classic cars or bikes and wear their racing kit, he said.
"That's the kind of send off I would like to see."
The service to celebrate Vile's life will be held at Grahams Pukekohe Chapel on May 28 at 1.30pm, followed by a private cremation.
Lone Star Pukekohe have displayed a plaque in memory of Vile, a loyal patron.
"Our bar has lost our most loyal guest and friend. You brought so much cheer, laughter and joy to the bar," it reads.
"You cared so much for all the staff, who equally cared for you.
"You will forever be in our bar and our hearts."