Thank you, La’auli Alan Grey!
Re: La’auli Alan Grey
It's not very often that a child is able to match the deeds and widespread public affection of a famous parent. It was doubly hard for La'auli Alan Grey, as the son of his internationally famous mother Aggie Grey.
But Alan achieved it in spades - and not in the outrageously outgoing manner of his vivacious mother Aggie, which those of us fortunate enough to have known her, will hold in our memories as long as we live.
Where Aggie was open about humanity and her wish to help people in so many different ways, Alan preferred to do good by stealth, and did so, just like his mother, in so many ways and to so many people.
I am one of a huge host of recipients of the alofa poured out by Aggie and her faithful companion Fred, and by Alan and Marina and their wonderful children, all of whom, in their time, have helped to enhance the worldwide reputation of Samoa as a haven of love for humanity.
I am sad that I cannot make to Apia on Wednesday to join in paying respect and tribute to Alan, and to help to console Marina and fanau.
Instead, I will be part of an Auckland rugby farewell to another son of Samoa, Tiumalumanaia Dylan Mika, a fellow member of the Barbarians Rugby Football Club.
But under my Baabaa's jacket, instead of that club's tie, I will wear the old tie of the Samoa Rugby Football Union given to me many years ago by Alan, with his admonition: "Terry, wear it with pride."
Aleni, ali'i, I will wear it not just with pride, but in gratitude for having known you. Manuia lau malaga.