Friday, April 12, 2024

A moment of reflection, 12 months on from Gabrielle

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Stortford Lodge cattle sale remembered those who lost lives and who lost livelihoods and homes to the cyclone this time last year.
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A moment of reflection started the Stortford Lodge cattle sale on Wednesday, February 14, to mark the one-year anniversary of Cyclone Gabrielle. 

Many in attendance were directly affected by the cyclone and for all, both at the saleyards and in the wider Hawke’s Bay area, it was a very emotional day. 

The moment of reflection was just one of many held throughout the region, on what was a beautiful summer’s day – a stark contrast to the carnage that had devastated the region only a year earlier.

Stock agents and auctioneers donned black or white shirts to mark the day, with the Hawke’s Bay rugby jersey a popular choice.

The Redshaw Livestock team were among those who showed their support by wearing black and white.
From left back, Hamish MacDonald, Will Maxwell, Dean Freeman, Malcolm MacDonald, Scott Heasley and Ken Simpson. From left front, Carol Milligan and Lynne Mottram.

Carrfields Livestock regional manager John Kingston read out an emotional tribute to all those impacted and to the lives lost, which came direct from the heart as Kingston and his family battled through floodwaters and lost their home to flooding during the event. 

His words were: 

“We stand here today wearing black and white

As one in unison for support and solidarity

To recognise the first anniversary of Cyclone Gabrielle

For those who find today raw, we all sympathise with you

Our thoughts go to those who lost their lives, and to their families

To those who were, and still are, affected, our thoughts are with you

Celebrate your successes

A massive thank-you to all the volunteers and workers who helped and did a fantastic job

Thanks to the people that turned up at properties to help, both local and ones that travelled distances

To all the people who donated goods, catering and financial assistance, thank you

You all helped get us through some very dark times and restored our faith in human nature

It really brought the best out of New Zealanders, well done!

Thank you and Kia Kaha

We all move forward together.”

In Focus Podcast: Cyclone Gabrielle – a story of survival

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