Family, Highlanders arrive to farewell Connor Garden-Bachop

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Highlanders at the memorial service for Connor Garden-Bachop.

Emotional Highlanders players and management have begun to arrive at the memorial service for Connor Garden-Bachop.

Hundreds of people have come to farewell the 25-year-old at the Linwood Sports Club in Christchurch on Tuesday.

Garden-Bachop, a Highlanders and Māori All Blacks representative, died in Christchurch on June 17.

It’s understood Garden-Bachop, a father of twin girls, died after a medical event at a relative’s home in Christchurch.

Garden-Bachop, an outside back, was the son of former All Black Stephen Bachop and former Black Fern Sue Garden-Bachop who died in 2009 after a long battle with cancer. He was also the nephew of former All Black Graeme Bachop.

Jamie Joseph led the Highlanders into the memorial service for Connor Garden-Bachop.

Tributes have been coming in from all around the world for Garden-Bachop, who attended Scots College in Wellington, as the rugby community supports each other through his tragic passing.

A joint statement was released from New Zealand Rugby, the New Zealand Māori Rugby Board, Highlanders, Wellington Rugby and New Zealand Rugby Players Association last Monday.

“Connor passed away on Monday following a medical event, and rugby’s collective focus at this time is on supporting his family. All of rugby walks alongside the Garden-Bachop family at this time and we are collectively united in our grief.”

Garden-Bachop was a “fantastic young player, an exciting New Zealand age-grade representative and a proud Māori All Black”.

“Wherever he played, he was a committed and popular team mate with infectious energy and someone who could light up the room.

“Most importantly, he was a loving father to his twin girls, a brother, a son and immeasurably loved by all those who knew him.”

– This story was first published by Stuff

According to the news on Radio New Zealand

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