Ko Hikurangi te maunga, ko Waiapu te awa, ko Whangaokena te motu, ko Hinepare te marae. Te Whānau a Hunaara, Ngāti Porou whānui, e tangi! E tangi ki tō koutou koroua kua mate, ki tō koutou reo kōrero kua wahangū!
Cassidy, kua mutu tō whakapau werawera kia ora ai te reo Māori, me te mōhio anō, kua ekengia ngā moana pukepuke, kua hoea ngā au kōaro, kia pari rā anō te tai, a, kua whakatata tō tātou waka ki uta.
I te wā i tīmata koe i te kura i Rangitukia, ka whiua ngā tamariki mo te kōrero Māori. Ka pakeke koe, ka hoki anō kōrua ko tō hoa rangatira ki te riu o Waiapu hei kaiwhakaako i Te Pae o te Riri i Tikitiki. Ko koe tētahi kaikōrero Māori tūturu i tū tō ringa hei kaiwhakaako reo Māori i te kura tuarua i Te Whanganui a Tara.
Nāwai rā ka haere koe ki Te Waipounamu hei kaitohutohu mā te Tari Matauranga, ki reira āwhina ai i a Kāi Tahu ki te whakarauora anō i tō rātou reo motuhake.
Nau te koraha i takahi kia taea ngā taumata e tika ana, i runga anō i tō whakapono, ko tā te kura i tukituki ai, mā te kura e whakapai anō. I te tau 2009, kua whakawhiwhia koe ki te tohu MNZM mo tō kaha ki te ako, ki te poipoi i te reo Māori.
Ko ngā tikanga tuku iho hei kaupapa mo ō kōrero whakaharakoa, mai rā anō i tō matua i a Hunaara mā, me tana whakapono ki te Tiriti o Waitangi, i a Hori Keeti mā, nāu ia i kawe ki ngā hui nunui i tōna wā. Ka whakahōnoretia koe hei mema tūturu o te Rōpū Wāhine Māori Toko i te Ora – he mihi nui tēnei nā te iwi ki a koe.
No reira Cassidy, e hoki ki ō tīpuna me te wairua tau mo ngā mahi i oti i a koe, waiho mā mātou ngā take hei kōkiri kia tūtuki rā anō i tēnei ao hou. Haere, haere, haere.
Māori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples has paid tribute to the lifetime achievements of Cassidy Wehipeihana Tangaere who passed away over the weekend.
“Cassidy was totally committed to education and te reo Māori, and his combination of skills and experience helped to turn the tide in favour of Māori language surviving for future generations,” said Dr Sharples.
“When he started primary school at Rangitukia, students were strapped for speaking Māori. As an adult, Cassidy and his wife returned as teachers to Tikitiki School. Cass later volunteered to become one of the first native speakers of Māori to train as a secondary school teacher in Wellington, and became an Education Department adviser in the South Island for six years, where he supported the revival of the distinctive Kāi Tahu dialect.”
“Cassidy broke new ground throughout his career, convinced that education can overcome historical prejudice and disadvantage and open up new opportunities. His commitment to te reo Māori and education was recognised in 2009 with the investiture of an MNZM.”
Dr. Sharples said “his humour was underpinned by a deep knowledge of history and tradition, from his father’s teachings about the Treaty of Waitangi, and from people like the tohunga Hori Gage, for whom Cassidy accompanied as driver in his youth. His community service was recognised with a life membership of the Māori Women’s Welfare League.”
“So Cass can return to his ancestors knowing that he made a huge contribution to turning around the prospects for our language, and he laid down a foundation for future generations to fulfil their dreams in a new era.”
Haere, haere, haere atu rā.