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Riki Ellison reconnects with his New Zealand roots

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  • Riki Ellison reconnects with his New Zealand roots

    This may be of interest to some of you. Riki Ellison has strong Maori heritage and his great uncle, Tom Ellison, was a famous rugby player in his time, captaining the New Zealand team inn the late 1800s.


    A Kiwi American football star turned missile defence advocate paid tribute to a rugby legend forebear in Dunedin this week.

    Three-time Superbowl winner Riki Ellison, the first New Zealander to play in the National Football League (NFL), visited the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame in Dunedin on Monday.He was joined by his second-cousin, Otakou farmer and kaumatua Edward Ellison.

    While there he viewed the display on his ancestor, Tom Ellison, the captain of New Zealand's first official rugby team when it toured Australia in 1893, and donated a shirt from his playing days.

    He also visited Tom Ellison's grave at Otakou on the Otago Peninsula, and registered himself, his children and grandchildren at Otakou marae, including son Rhett who plays in the NFL as a tight-end for the New York Giants.

    https://www.odt.co.nz/sport/other-sp...issile-defence

    The name Ellison still keeps popping up on rugby team sheets around the country. One of Riki's cousins, Tamati Ellison, played here in Dunedin for a few years for the local Super Rugby franchise and I think he played a couple of international games for the New Zealand All Blacks.

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