Sunday, 11 December 2011

Sad News - death of John Hannah

I didn't post this news yesterday, as I was still trying to get my head around it. A long-time friend of mine, John Hannah, was killed on Friday night in a tramping accident. I haven't managed to catch up with Hetta yet, but have left messages.

The Nelson Mail's Anna Pearson (10 December 2011) had this to say at

A 63-year-old Nelson man with a love of cricket, family and the New Zealand seafood industry has died in a fall while tramping in Kahurangi National Park.

John Leo Hannah was negotiating difficult terrain with friends in the Adelaide Tarn area when he fell 20 metres to his death about 7pm yesterday.

He was tramping with two others, after a fourth member of their party was airlifted from near Lonely Lake by the Summit rescue helicopter earlier in the day with a suspected broken ankle.

Mr Hannah joined Sealord in 1988 as a business development manager, and was said to be responsible for the company's successful move into aquaculture.

He went on to take the helm at the New Zealand School of Fisheries, as the Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology's marine studies chief.

His friend and long-time neighbour Alan Winwood said the pair had been Rotary members together for more than 20 years.

He said Mr Hannah was one of the "leading knights" [sic] in Rotary cricket circles, with a trip to India with the New Zealand cricket team planned for next year. "He was a family man and community-minded." He said Mr Hannah was an experienced tramper, and was on a five-day trip with "three of his closest mates".

Nelson Tramping Club president Lawrie Halkett said he had been tramping in the Adelaide Tarn area in the Douglas Range twice, and it was "very steep".

"There is a tramp that you can do from the Cobb Valley through the Aorere Valley. It definitely is only a route for very experienced trampers," he said.

Senior Sergeant Stu Koefoed of Nelson said police were speaking with the other members of the tramping party to ascertain the full circumstances relating to Mr Hannah's death, and the matter would be referred to the coroner.

He will be sadly missed. I will post when the funeral is, once I know, for those of you who want to attend.


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