Auckland - Several hundred people have attended the first public memorial service for former New Zealand winger Jonah Lomu at the south-Auckland church his family often attended when he was a child.
Mourners on Sunday at the Lotofale'ia Tongan Methodist Church in the suburb of Mangere, where Lomu was raised, included his wife Nadene, their sons Brayley, 6, and Dhyreille, 5, and Lomu's mother Hepi.
Many of the congregation wore Ta'ovala, a traditional Tongan woven skirt worn to show respect, especially in times of mourning.
Lomu died on Wednesday aged 40 of cardiac arrest after a 20-year battle with kidney illness. Details of his funeral service and other memorial events have yet to be finalized