Fellow magicians organised a wand-breaking ceremony at the funeral of Whanganui magician Ken Bates - also known as Mr Wonderful and a Grand Master of Magic.
Ken died on September 24, aged 87 and after two years of declining health. But he will be remembered for his jokes and his many years entertaining people of all ages in Whanganui and beyond.
He was a very outgoing, bubbly person, his son Paul Bates said.
"He was always laughing, always playing a joke on someone. [My brother] Michael and I have so many good memories of him."
Ken's philosophy of magic was that it should be fun, and you should have fun doing it.
He loved to surprise his audiences with a bizarre turn of events, a vanish or a transformation, friend and fellow magician Andrew Wilson said.
He liked to earn a laugh from the sudden shock.
He concentrated on giving his audiences surprises.
Wilson said his patter also had sudden and unexpected turns. He would say he was an educational performer: "Once you've seen me you will have learned your lesson." Or he would say: "I am sure my act will go down well – like the Titanic."
Ken was born in Leicester, England, in 1933. His father Fred was fond of magic tricks and he started going to magic conventions himself. At his engagement party he attempted a fire eating trick that misfired - burning holes in the carpet.
In 1972 he immigrated to New Zealand with his wife Shirley and sons Michael, aged 14, and Paul, 11. They settled in Whanganui because Shirley's brother Roy had a fish and chip shop in Dublin St.
Ken started Dublin St Fruit Supply, later worked for Coull Battell and still later started the Wanganui Produce Centre in Taupo Quay. Shirley opened a florist shop and Lilly's, a fashion boutique.
The two bought a section in East Way on Durie Hill, and built a house.
In 1974 Ken answered an advertisement about forming a Wanganui Magic Circle, and when that ended he joined the Palmerston North Magic Circle and was its president for a time.
His first show in Whanganui was at the Brunswick Hall, and he was paid with a small ham, pickles and a cake. He went on to perform regularly at the Palm Lounge for 15 years, in other theatres, at shows and at private functions.
His Mr Wonderful comedy show used his wife Shirley, who pretended to be his bored assistant. She was often the butt of his jokes, but managed to subtly upstage him there.
They sometimes performed with Paul, who was interested in magic from his early years.
In 1990 Ken won a magic competition in Wellington and was offered a job performing in a Vanuatu restaurant, which he did every year for 13 years. His acts won many awards and he travelled to Australia and the United States to attend magic conventions.
In 2009 his fellow magicians made him a Grand Master of Magic. At that time he was one of only 15 to attain that status in 40 years.
When he had time to spare from work and magic, Ken played bowls and went fishing.
The wand-breaking ceremony happened at his Whanganui funeral, before fellow magicians, when he "joined that special band of magical entertainers who surprised and amazed us and who now move on to eternity", Wilson said.
Son Paul, also known as Zappo and a full-time magician based in Greytown, keeps the magic going.
"For me he is always going to be there. I always talk about my dad in my show," he said.