Community mourns a 'very good man'

Dave Jongsma.
Dave Jongsma.
Friends and colleagues of Hawea Flat man Dave Jongsma yesterday remembered a ''big, friendly happy person'' who will be greatly missed around Wanaka.

Dr Jongsma (54) died in a paragliding accident on Roys Peak on Tuesday.

The chiropractor was one of the first tenants at Wanaka Lakes Health Centre when it opened around 2011 and previously worked at Aspiring Medical Centre at its facility in Dungarvon St.

He had been working as a chiropractor in Wanaka for close to 20 years.

Clinic spokesman Dr Simon Brebner said Dr Jongsma had a lot of time for his patients and his colleagues would miss him.

''Dave had a wide range of skillsets. He was highly regarded and provided an excellent service to many people.''

''He was a big, friendly happy person around the workplace. It won't be the same without him,'' Dr Brebner said.

Dr Jongsma was a member of Save Wanaka Lakefront Reserves Trust, being heavily involved in the fight against the Wanaka Watersports facility proposed for a popular and undeveloped section of the Wanaka lakefront in Roys Bay.

Wanaka-Hawea Reserves Trust chairman John Coe, who worked alongside Dr Jongsma in opposing the facility, said he would be sadly missed.

''He was a very good man, a deep thinker. He would always stand up to be counted,'' Mr Coe said.

Emergency services were alerted to the crash halfway up Roys Peak around 3pm on Tuesday.

A rescue helicopter reached the site about 5pm. Dr Jongsma was found dead.

Dr Jongsma was a keen whitewater kayaker and often paddled in the purpose-built Hawea Whitewater Park near Camphill Rd.

He leaves behind two adult daughters, Taylor and Kirsten.

sean.nugent@odt.co.nz

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