The man killed in a motorcycle crash near Reporoa last weekend has been remembered as a "funny fella" who adored his family.
Murupara man Nikora Nathan Apirana, 50, died in a crash on Settlers Rd last Saturday and was farewelled by family and friends at Te Umaroa Marae in Ruatahuna yesterday.
Before the tangihanga, his close friend Bob Ransfield described Apirana to the Rotorua Daily Post.
"He was a funny fella, a hard case. If there was anything on to support, he was always there.
"He was all about the people. He was about whānau, mates and good times ...
"He cracked everyone up."
Ransfield said he worked with Apirana in forestry and had played rugby with him.
"He loved his moko and his children. They've gotten older now and he was starting to kick back and enjoy life. His moko adored him and he was a beautiful koro."
Ransfield and Apirana were both part of a motorcycle group called HQ Riders which had been going about a year.
The group rode in convoy to Apirana's tangi.
"That's how our group is. We all tautoko each other in everything we do," he said.
"It's only a little community here. We all know each other."
Ransfield said the group gathered before the tangi to share memories, a few beers and to "send our brother off".
"He's got heaps of memories, funny memories. They will probably come up at the poroporoaki (farewell)."
He said the loss of life was a "shame" and "waste".
Apirana's was the only vehicle involved in Saturday's crash. Following the crash, the road was closed and diversions were in place.
Hundreds of motorcyclists turned up at the site to pray.
Settlers Rd was closed again on Tuesday for three hours as part of the investigation into the crash. The Serious Crash Unit mapped out the scene.