Wednesday, 30 March 2011


This week got off to a wretched start, my son Matt lost a great friend Jason Nilsen and another mate Dan Young is in hospital recovering from serious injuries after a boating accident in Fiordland.
Jason was a man with a good heart. He made sure that whenever he was passing through Central Otago that mum and dad always got a feed of fish.

He was never ever destined to do anything but fish and he was good at it.

He followed the six generations of salt encrusted footsteps of his Maori, English and Norwegian fishermen ancestors.

One branch of his family, the Calders was heavily entrenched in the Bluff oyster industry while the others, Nilsens and Bradshaws were cray and cod harvesters.

Jason had a huge lust for life and was always up to something - his "stealth missions" were legend.

He had a close bond with my son and his mate Dan and the three were plotting and planning world domination of Ernest Island - the muttonbird island where Dan and Mat and often Jason met once a year with their families. Some of Rakiuras finest young guns.

Jason supplied 45 huge crayfish tails for Matts recent wedding and Dan gave an hilarious speech about some of the "missions" that Mat and he had got up to over the years.

And Jason was also a wonderful father to Morgan, who loved his dad very, very much.

Jason was planning a mission of sorts when he was killed. He had bought the boat he was killed in to transport tourists to a big barge he had in Doubtful Sound. He had rigged it up so that you could get TV and watch it in comfort. He planned to take tourists to it for the Rugby World Cup 2011.

We will miss Jason - his wit, loyalty, unfailing good humour, his enormously generous spirit and big big heart.

Sail on Jason.


Evelyn Cook said...

Haere atu rā, e tama

So many memories

Bill Day said...

Jason was fabulous to me. He helped me with a vessel in Fiordland on several occasions. He was one of those young men that made you feel great about being a Kiwi. He will be sadly missed.