Both Keith & Rona were born into farming families pre WWII, and after completing his schooling, Keith worked at home on the farm, as was expected. Keith and a brother later had the opportunity to purchase the small dairy property near Paeroa that had been in the family since 1913, and worked hard to develop it into a profitable unit.
Keith purchased his brother’s share in the property in 1956, and he and Rona were married in the same year. Their four children were born and schooled at Paeroa, until the farm was sold and the family moved to a larger property at Otamarakau in 1973.
In 1990 the dairy farm was sold and the couple purchased a kiwifruit orchard near Te Puke as an investment and interest for Keith, while he and Rona adjusted to being ‘townies’, living firstly at Papamoa, then Ohauiti and finally settling in Maungatapu. Retirement allowed time to pursue new interests, enjoy some travel, and Keith became a regular volunteer for Waipuna Hospice until he passed away in 2013.
Rona wished to give some financial help to the community and established their endowment fund in 2016. The beneficiaries from the fund are Waipuna Hospice, St John Tauranga/WBOP, and the Tauranga Rescue Helicopter service.