Tragic loss of young rugby star

Teen’s death un­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion

South Waikato News - - NEWS - By BELINDA FEEK

A 15 year old killed by a car on State High­way 1 at Toko­roa was a promis­ing rugby player who ex­celled at de­bat­ing.

Ran­gi­tiriao Fred­er­ick Murray Wilson, of Toko­roa, died af­ter be­ing hit by a north­bound car about a kilo­me­tre north of the town on Sun­day.

Taupo po­lice crash an­a­lyst Se­nior Con­sta­ble Dave Frazer said it had been clar­i­fied that the car that struck Ran­gi­tiriao, known as Rangi, was the only ve­hi­cle in­volved in the in­ci­dent.

The big­gest ques­tion now, was how and why Rangi was ly­ing in the road at 4am on a Sun­day, Mr Frazer said.

‘‘He has been ly­ing on the road when he was run over; why he was on the road ly­ing down, we don’t know.’’

Mr Frazer said Rangi had been at a party.

‘‘He had been at a party and was taken to town ear­lier in the night.

‘‘At the mo­ment we’re try­ing to find out where else he has been.’’

Mr Frazer de­scribed Rangi’s death as a ‘‘waste’’ and said it ap­peared Rangi may have been un­der the in­flu­ence of al­co­hol.

It was too early to say what, if any, charges would be laid against the driver of the ve­hi­cle which hit Rangi.

The wo­man and her fe­male pas­sen­ger both suf­fered se­ri­ous in­juries in the crash.

‘‘It was dark, no speed [is­sue], no light­ing, could she have seen him?

‘‘There’s a lot of work to be done at the mo­ment,’’ Mr Frazer said.

Toko­roa High School prin­ci­pal and a Wilson fam­ily friend, Wil­lie Ford, told the Waikato Times the fam­ily were ‘‘dev­as­tated’’.

‘‘They’re tak­ing it very hard . . . es­pe­cially the dad.

‘‘I have known dad for a long time and he was close with his boy.

‘‘I went around as soon as I heard [on Sun­day] and I will go around when Rangi is brought back to the fam­ily home. . .

‘‘I think the rest of us just have to sup­port them as much as we can.’’

Ran­gi­tiriao’s funeral was held to­day at Toko­roa High School’s Whanau a Noa Marae.

Mr Ford said Ran­gi­tiriao’s fam­ily wanted an­swers about the ac­ci­dent as much as ev­ery­body else.

Ran­gi­tiriao had at­tended Toko­roa High School since the be­gin­ning of last year af­ter pre­vi­ously at­tend­ing For­est View High School.

Mr Ford said Ran­gi­tiriao was a pop­u­lar boy who was heav­ily in­volved with the school, be­ing a wing with the First XV rugby team, on the de­bat­ing team and on the Maori de­bat­ing team the Nga­manu Korero group.

Ran­gi­tiriao, the youngest of five sib­lings, was yet to make up his mind about what he wanted to do when he was older but had been likely to at­tend univer­sity.

Photo: A1 PHOTOGRAPHY

GONE TOO SOON: Ran­gi­tiriao Fred­er­ick Murray Wilson died af­ter be­ing hit by a north­bound car one kilo­me­tre north of Toko­roa.

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