22 August, 2017, 01:04 | Author: Laura Christensen
Meads was diagnosed with cancer past year and breathed his last in hospital in his home town of Te Kuiti.
Meads, nicknamed as "Pinetree" at an early age, He was widely considered to embody the best qualities of an All Blacks player and was renowned for his toughness and uncompromising attitude in an global playing career that spanned 14 years.
Sir Colin was also a prized guest on our very Māori Television programmes.
New Zealand has lost not just a rugby great with the passing of Colin Meads, but also a cultural icon.
Meads was a regular visitor to the annual New Zealand Bloodstock Yearling Sale series at Karaka and a familiar figure on New Zealand racecourses as he and his wife travelled around the country to support their horses.
He appeared for the All Blacks 133 times in all matches, 11 as captain.
"Our thoughts go to Lady Verna and the Meads family at this time", said Impey said. "He loved being an All Black and he loved his family dearly".
"I had the pleasure to sit down with him a couple of times and he wasn't shy of having a beer and a good yarn".
He also became only the second All Black in history to be sent off when Irish referee Kevin Kelleher dismissed him for unsafe play during a 1967 win against Scotland.
McCaw never saw him play in the flesh, but knew him as someone built on physical and mental toughness.
"He was a quintessential unassuming New Zealander - one of those we feel especially proud of as a nation", Peters said in a statement.
Among those paying tribute to Meads was Jacinda Ardern, leader of the opposition Labour party, and current rugby union players. "On behalf of all players, our thoughts go out to his family at this time".
In 2006, New Zealand's amateur provincial competition was renamed as the Heartland Championship with the winners awarded the Meads Cup.
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