Hector Busby

Māori navigator and ship builder

Sir Hector "Hec" Busby KNZM MBE (1 August 1932 – 11 May 2019) was a New Zealand Māori navigator and waka builder. He is also known by his Māori name Heke-nuku-mai-nga-iwi Puhipi. He built 26 traditional waka, a Māori canoe. He sailed over 30,000 nautical miles in the Pacific including Hawaii, Cook Islands, French Polynesia, New Caledonia and Norfolk Island. He was award many honours for services to Māori people, including Member of the Order of the British Empire (1994), Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit (2014) and Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit (2018).

Busby in 2014

Busby died on 11 May 2019, at the age of 86.[1]


  1. "Master canoe builder Sir Hekenukumai 'Hec' Busby dies aged 86". TVNZ. 11 May 2019. Retrieved 11 May 2019.