For Nobby Roderick, the Waitoa Park Golf Club will always hold special memories.
It was the last place the Oamaru man saw his son, Tane, alive, and next month it will be where he remembers him one year on.
Tane was killed in February last year, after he was hit by Austrian tourist Melanie Giesinger’s Toyota Hiace, near Moeraki, where the Auckland-based motorcyclist always said he would retire.
“We thought it was pretty strange to be killed right there, a place he really loved,” Nobby said.
The 42-year-old had stopped in at the Waitoa Park Golf Club to visit his father the night before he was killed, and spent time talking to club members.
“He was one of these guys that was interesting, and he just got talking and telling tales .. there was about 16 of them [golfers] that were about an hour and a-half late home – their wives were ringing up wondering where they were.”
Golf was a central part of their relationship, so Nobby has organised a memorial golf day in Tane’s honour, to be held at Waitoa Park on February 5.
“He was just too good a bloke to forget about. He was very popular and we used to have our game of golf, so I thought to remind everyone of him’.”
Within days of announcing the three-person ambrose tournament, it had a full 60-person playing field, and Nobby was moved by the response.
In the wake of the Tane’s death, the golf club members had been amazing in their support for the family, Nobby said.
“The club members have been so good – especially the police force.”
He heaped praise on Constable Neil Rushton, of the Oamaru police, who supported the family after the crash. Const Rushton and Nobby had formed a close bond.
“[Neil] took me up to see Tane after the accident. He plays at the golf club, and we’ve become pretty good mates.”
Nobby described his son’s death as “shattering” and while it was coming up to the first anniversary of the crash, he said it did not feel so long ago that it happened.
“I used to look at that TV ad where the police were pulling up when someone had an accident and had to go back and tell the families.
“I used to always think to myself ‘jeepers, that must be hard on those people, the poor souls’ and then when it happens to yourself you go ‘oh my God’.”
Nobby will compete in the memorial tournament alongside his daughter, Kara Roderick-Wandless , and granddaughter Tayla (18), who are travelling from Invercargill with other family members for the tournament.
Tane has nicknames for everyone – and those names would be printed on T-shirts the family would wear for the tournament.
Players could expect the unexpected – from teeing off on car tyres, to using tennis balls instead of golf balls – and there would be “Tane’s shout”, a round of drinks he would always supply.
A carpenter by trade, Tane branched out as project manager and had recently married.
He loved motorbikes, and was travelling to the Burt Munro Classic at the time of the accident.
Nobby and his wife, Judith, described Tane as a real character.