- Publish Date
- Monday, 5 October 2020, 3:56PM
A moving haka echoed around Porirua College last week, as dozens of New Zealand Police officers paid tribute to their fallen colleague, Sergeant Matt Ratana, who had moved to London to join the Met police force.
The emotional moment took place during the New Zealand Police Remembrance Day service, in which they also paid tribute to Constable Matthew Hunt, who was killed at a routine traffic stop in Massey earlier this year.
Speaking during the service, New Zealand Police Commissioner Andrew Coster said: "This haka ensures the manner of our slain officers never diminishes ...
"The haka says 'let our hearts beat as one, let our thoughts be united, let our cause be collective'. In my view, this very eloquently reflects why we're gathered here today.
"We also take this opportunity to remember London Metropolitan Police Sergeant Matui Ratana who was shot on duty.
"Matui was also a part of the New Zealand police family having served with us from 2003 to 2008. Described by former colleagues as a 'larger than life character', we remember him today."
Originally from Hawke's Bay, Sgt Ratana joined the Metropolitan Police in London in 1991 after moving there in his early 20s.
The popular sergeant returned to New Zealand to serve for Auckland City and Counties Manukau police between 2003 and 2008, before going back to Britain.
He also acted as a protection officer for Princess Diana, the Queen Mother and former Prime Minister John Major.
The 54-year-old was shot as he was preparing to search a handcuffed suspect, who had managed to smuggle a revolver into the custody suite.