Kiwi Craig MacLugash, second from right, lives in Brazil with his wife Simone MacLugash, son Braedyn MacLugash, 11, and daughter Islay-Karyn MacLugash, 14. Photo / Provided
A Kiwi who dies while riding a motorbike with friends in Brazil is remembered as a loving father and husband who made friends around the world.
Former Auckland business owner Craig MacLugash died on November 7 after colliding with a water truck near his home in Votuporanga, 500 km inland from Sao Paulo.
The 52-year-old is survived by his wife, Simone, daughter Islay-Karyn, 14, and son Braedyn, 11.
MacLugash’s mother and stepfather, Joclyn and Ian Trethowen, spoke with the Herald from their home in Auckland today.
Her son, a successful entrepreneur who retired early, was someone who always worked hard, and who won many friendships, said Joclyn Trethowen.
“He has lots of friends … [and] he is a good father. Children were taken to many places. “
Māngere College-educated MacLugash has a passion for rugby league, starting in his youth as central midfielder for the Manukau Magpies and then playing in the club’s rugby league in England, and also has deep ties to his father’s home country of Scotland, says Ian Trethowen.
“Very little he doesn’t know about the league. And he is very proud of his Scottish heritage. When he went there, he learned Gaelic, and he was very involved in the Highland Games here.
“She even married in a skirt.”
MacLugash worked as baggage handler for Air New Zealand prior to his electrical apprenticeship and in his 30s has started, with co-owner, construction and maintenance company Total Property Worx.
MacLugash sold half of his business three years ago and is following his dream of moving his family to Simone’s home country of Brazil.
But he’s starting to think about moving closer to home, says Ian Trethowen.
“He’s determined to buy property on the Gold Coast next year.”
His stepson loved Harley-Davidson motorcycles and bought his own motorbike from the United States.
“He goes horse riding every weekend and enjoys life.”
His family doesn’t know what caused the accident because MacLugash was speeding ahead of others in his motorbike social group when he crashed into a water truck. He was dead by the time his friends called him.
“There are no witnesses and we don’t think there will be a police report, which is pretty tough for us.”
MacLugash has already been cremated and it is likely that Simone will bring his body back to New Zealand next year, said Ian Trethowen.
“Our hope is to take him home.”