Tuakana Samuel pictured last month squeezing coconut cream for the making of coconut oil at the ‘White House’ in Mauke. 20122019
The island of Mauke and the families of 49-year-old Tuakana Samuel are reeling from the sudden shock of his passing over the weekend.
of the island gathered at the airport to meet the Air Rarotonga chartered
flight on Saturday afternoon that was dispatched to return Samuel to Rarotonga.
was born and raised in Matavera to parents Vainetutai Samuel (nee Atera) and
the late Upokoina Samuel.
to Mauke two years ago for a fresh re-start in life, and to utilise his skill
and love of planting with the island’s fertile soil.
Joanne Stevens, Ngavaine Makitai and Tupuna Mo’o - ladies of the “White House”
in Mauke, are devastated at the loss of their dear friend.
has been like a brother to us, anything we have asked him to do for us sisters
he would always deliver… he built our clothes line, and anything that was
broken in the house he would fix,” said Stevens.
experienced and avid planter, he had great ideas about agriculture and
successful crops for the island in the years looking ahead.
would visit often for a coffee and a chat. We will dearly miss his presence and
his sense of humour,” said Stevens.
great guy, a man with such a passion for planting.”
had planted a large crop of pineapples, with a vision to expand his plantations
next year; his watermelon plots will be ready to harvest in February.
Chief Executive Officer Royston Jones said it appeared Samuel had passed away
in his sleep at home; he was discovered on Saturday morning.
arrangements are yet to be announced.
go out to his families and friends and the people of Akatokamanava.