Tourism legend: The late Lindsay Westaway

Two hugely positive characters who made major contributions to Queenstown died in the past 10 days.

Lindsay Westaway, who passed away, aged 78, on April 29, was — along with his late wife, Dianne — the face of the Walter Peak tourism venture for 37 years.

And Wayne Cafe, who died last Sunday at 69, was a popular ski instructor turned real estate agent who co-ran a ski racing fundraiser which catapulted Cure Kids into becoming one of New Zealand’s most successful charities.

Lindsay — as farm manager and rural demonstrator at Walter Peak — welcomed more than 2.5 million visitors off the Earnslaw steamer till he and Dianne retired to Kirwee, in Canterbury, in 2012.

Employing his unique humour and showmanship, he was one of NZ’s great tourism characters.

On his 69th birthday, in 2014, he was back in Queenstown dressed as Lulu for that year’s Winter Festival Drag Race, which he duly won.

His funeral was held in Kirwee on Tuesday.

Big-hearted: The late Wayne Cafe

Wayne, meanwhile, co-organised for five years a 24-hour international ski race, 50K of Coronet, which, alone, raised $1 million for the former Child Health Research Foundation.

Queenstowner Kaye Parker, who was onboard for 50K and then became Cure Kids’ CEO, says Wayne was “one of the most positive men I know, he always had a smile on his face”.

“I really admired him, when he knew his health wasn’t going to get better he just lived his best life.”

A memorial service for Wayne is being held on May 23, at 2.30pm, at the Arrowtown Athenaeum Hall.

Fuller tributes will follow.

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