Rugby World mourns All Black legend Jonah Lomu
The rugby world was saddened to hear of the sudden death of All Blacks legend Jonah Lomu, in the early hours of Wednesday morning, 18th November 2015.
The imposing winger first crashed onto the global scene at the dawn of professional rugby, at the 1995 World Cup and is hailed as the man who changed the face of rugby forever.
Lomu had been diagnosed with a serious kidney condition, nephrotic syndrome by 1996 and had a kidney transplant in 2004. However the organ stopped functioning in 2011 and he had been relying on dialysis ever since. No cause of death has been put forward, but family spokesman and ex-All Black doctor John Mayhew told television stations in New Zealand that Lomu’s death was “totally unexpected” after he and his family arrived back from the UK and the Rugby World Cup on Tuesday.
He is survived by wife Nadene who said in a statement today: “It is with great sadness that I must announce my dear husband Jonah Lomu died (overnight). “This is a devastating loss for our family and may I ask that our privacy, especially the privacy of our two very young boys, be respected as we take them through this traumatic time.”
Since then tributes have been pouring in. NZRFU chief executive Steve Tew said: “Jonah was a legend of our game and loved by his many fans both here and around the world.” Former team-mates like Sean Fitzpatrick and Tana Umaga expressed condolences and shock.
A very special person. @AllBlacks - Sean Fitzpatrick (@frontrow92)
Luni laid to rest yesterday and the Big Guy gone too!! #Whatthehellshappening !! #Stillindisbelief !! #Restinloveuso 's! #Lovetothefamilies ! - Tana Umaga (@tanaumaga)
So sad to hear that Jonah Lomu has died. Rugby's first global star, what a player and more important what a good guy #verysad - Will Carling (@willcarling)
I am so, so devastated to hear of the passing away of @JONAHTALILOMU The greatest superstar and just a fabulous human being. Deeply saddened - Jonny Wilkinson (@JonnyWilkinson)
Deeply saddened to hear of @JONAHTALILOMU passing. Rugby's first true global icon/legend. A true gentleman & nice guy! #RIPJonah - Joel Stransky (@stranners)
Au revoir Jonah #RIPJonah pic.twitter.com/PlhK80Aciw - christophe dominici (@christophedomi)
RIP Big brother #11 - Liam Messam (@LiamMessam)
Would of done anything to have played a test with him. Gone way too soon my brother #ripjonah pic.twitter.com/tb8ZLROKfu - Dan Carter (@DanCarter) N
Really shocked to wake up and hear that the biggest and best rugby legend of all time @JONAHTALILOMU has passed away. RIP the big guy - James Haskell (@jameshaskell)
Thank you Mr Lomu, your highlights will inspire for the life of rugby. #11 #OneOfAKind pic.twitter.com/ibP1enrhsh - Nick Cummins (@nckcmmns)
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