Keith Edward Cowper 21-08-41 – 03-12-15

Keith CowperA pillar of society and a well respected Member of the Helensville Community, Keith was sadly not immune to the ravages of depression. It was this illness that cruelly took Keith from us, leaving a void not only within his family and friends but also in the lives of many in the Helensville District.
Keith’s Life:
Keith moved to Helensville as a child and attended Helensville Primary and Helensville District High School where he became Head Boy. At High School he was a member of the First 11 Cricket Team and First 15 Rugby Team. His passion for sports continued throughout his life and he was well known by many as an active Member and Committee Member of the Helensville Rugby Club, Cricket Club, Tennis Club and both Helensville and South Head Golf Clubs.
His love of sport took Keith on many trips both locally and overseas, his last being RWC 2015 where he watched his beloved All Blacks take the Webb Ellis Cup at Twickenham while in the Company of one of his old friends from Saudi Arabia.
Keith joined the Kaipara Co-Operative Dairy Co Ltd Helensville in 1966. After gaining a Diploma in Dairy Technology from Massey University Keith accepted a position as Production Manager for the National Dairy and Ice cream Plant at Al Khobar in Saudi Arabia at the age of 29.
Keith’s working life in the Dairy Industry also took him to:
Dubai in 1977 as a Project coordinator for a joint venture between the Kaipara Co-op Dairy Company and a Dubai based company.
Fiji in 1980 supervising the completion, installation and commissioning of a new factory along with selection and training of staff for Kato Ice cream Company (While working for New American Ice cream).
His work post Dairy Industry varied and included:
Owning and operating the local Produce shop in Helensville 1984, Confectionery distribution franchise and Lil Orbits Donuts. He also worked for Martech Corporation in the old KDC building, and his final job before retirement was for Resene Paints in Henderson then South Auckland.
At the time of his death, Keith was Vice President of the Kaipara RSA. He became actively involved in several RSA projects including the establishment of the ‘Lest We Forget’ poppy display boards in the entrance of the Kaipara RSA. A register of First World War Soldiers whose names appear on the Parakai, Helensville and Kaukapakapa memorial boards with each Soldier’s researched details printed as individual booklets. The final on-going project being the series of display boards throughout the Community marking important dates and events of World War 1.
In April this year Keith travelled to Gallipoli to commemorate the centenary of the Anzacs landing in Gallipoli. After his return he delivered a comprehensive account of his Gallipoli trip to The Helensville Historical Society. An article in the Nor-west News in May last year quotes Keith saying, “You can’t really fathom what you’re reading about until you go there. Now when I read a name, I can say I remember or recognize that area and appreciate exactly how and what unfolded. It’ll now have some significance.”
Keith is greatly missed by his Whanau as they struggle to understand and come to terms with his sudden and untimely death. They would like to take this opportunity to thank the Community and Keith’s many friends for their loving support that was very much appreciated.
For more information on depression and helping people with depression go to www.depression.org.nz or call 0800 111 757.

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