A "warrior for the needy and disadvantaged" and a "relentless" woman who fought for people who couldn't fight for themselves.
That's how Tauranga activist and community volunteer Colleen Spiro is being remembered after her death on Sunday, aged 67.
She had long-term health battles but her passing came as a shock to some who loved her.
Spiro was known for her many efforts to help Tauranga's homeless as well as for being outspoken on various council issues, speaking up for Māori and protesting against racism.
She campaigned against the Pilot Bay boardwalk and won a compromise, and was a fixture at many public meetings over the years, often with a video camera in hand.
To daughter Tam Gourlay, however, Spiro was simply "the greatest mum ever".
"She was my rock. I am devastated she has passed, but she is at peace now."
She said her mum had health issues from a young age, but struggled particularly with lung affliction COPD - chronic obstructive pulmonary disease - especially in the last five years.
"It didn't hold her back, that's for sure.
"She still did everything she wanted to do and didn't care if she hurt anyone's feelings or got in the way of everything."
She said her mother was motivated by "wanting the best for everyone".
"She fought for people that maybe couldn't fight for themselves."
Spiro had some clashes over the years but Gourlay said her mum was not concerned about offending people.
"To be honest I don't think she really cared. She definitely just wanted to fight for what was right.
"She was just so passionate. If it wasn't right, she wasn't having it."
Spiro loved Tauranga and lived in the city her whole life, apart from a stint travelling in her early years.
"She was born in Gate Pa and build a little house after she came home from travelling and settled. It was where the Welcome Bay tunnel is now. The house was taken by Land Transport for the tunnel. We lived in that house for 30 years. We lived in Greerton for the last six years."
She said Spiro had her first daughter, Claire, very young and placed her for adoption. They all reconnected later in life and Gourlay said they became a happy family.
Spiro also married and divorced twice in her life.
She studied computing and loved crafting, gardening and music, and had a wide circle of friends.
Spiro had not wanted a "big fancy funeral" so there would be a viewing where people could say goodbye on Wednesday morning followed by a private family gathering, at Jones & Co Hillsdene chapel.
"The community has lost a community angel."
Friend of two decades Heather Irvine said Spiro was her neighbour on Hammond St when they lost their homes to make way for the Welcome Bay underpass.
"She ended up in Greerton and I ended up in Hairini and we have been constant friends since then."
They shared a love of high tea and op-shopping - once taking a holiday to Australia where they were so successful at the second-hand shops even an extra bag couldn't get it all back to New Zealand.
"She couldn't resist a bargain and she couldn't resist sparkles."
Irvine said Spiro worked hard and fought hard for her community.
Minister for Women Jan Tinetti, a Labour list MP based in Tauranga, said she was devastated to hear Spiro had died.
"I loved Colleen. I loved her because she went in to bat for the underdog. She was relentless but she cared about people.
"As a woman in politics she was very supportive of women but she didn't let you get away with anything either. She challenged for others all the time."
Spiro co-founded He Kaupapa Kotahitanga Trust - Awhina House, founded the Street Retreat community meal and was a supporter of several other community groups helping people who are hungry or homeless.
Kai Aroha-Feeding Our Hungry Community founder Tania Lewis-Rickard said Spiro was an "extraordinary woman".
"She was our pākeha mana wahine who stood for the injustices of Māori, the vulnerable and homeless in Tauranga Moana.
"Colleen not only had passion, she had drive, she was always on fire. You'd have to think twice if you chose to take a stand against her, particularly if you were not genuine, otherwise she'd smoke you."
She said Spiro was tenacious and got the job done.
"She toiled, she laboured, she stood for the cause, she was in the thick of it all, she helped transform lives."
Lewis-Rickard said this was especially true in the founding of Awhina House, Tauranga's first shelter for homeless women, in 2019.
Angela Wallace was also on the founding team and said that without Spiro, "Awhina House wouldn't be here today.
"She was such a community-minded person with a huge heart who was not afraid to tell it like it is."
Former city councillor Jako Abrie knew Spiro through her work with homeless people and said she had a heart for the vulnerable and fought fiercely for the voiceless.
Val Millington knew Spiro through her community causes and said she was "a warrior for the needy and disadvantaged".
"She had a steel about her. She was fierce and empathetic as well.
"She gave her all and was very vocal and practical - people are often one or the other but Colleen was both."