Neil retired from Armstrong Murray earlier this month after more than four decades at the firm, during which he ably and proudly represented his clients and their families – in many cases, through several generations.
Neil’s clients have valued his depth of experience, professionalism and friendly nature. A truly vocational lawyer, Neil was incredibly considerate of their needs, going above and beyond for every client. And he always did it with a smile.
Neil is known for taking a genuine interest in the lives of his colleagues and their loved ones, forever willing to offer advice or support when needed and welcoming new staff with great enthusiasm. His colleagues have appreciated his caring nature and the undivided attention he gave them, engaging fully in every conversation.
Neil always made himself available to discuss legal issues and complicated files with our junior lawyers. He was never too busy to help. Every time a colleague walked into his office for advice or guidance, he cleared the files off his spare chair and encouraged them to sit down, no matter how small the question.
Whatever the occasion, whether a Christmas party, weekend retreat or morning tea, Neil entered into every work function with a sense of humour and a heartfelt speech at the ready.
Neil’s heart of gold extends beyond his clients and colleagues. In the time that we have known Neil, he has devoted a great deal of his time to the community. His dedication and commitment have furthered the endeavours of sporting organisations, sports teams, Rotary Exchange, charities, school boards and the Citizens Advice Bureau – for whom he has been giving free advice every Thursday night for more than 30 years.
Neil is a cricket tragic who can quote obscure cricket statistics and events. He is a qualified cricket coach, patron of the Takapuna District Cricket Club and serves on the Auckland Cricket Association’s Judicial Committee.
He was probably the only New Zealander to watch the launch of Apollo 11 live at Cape Canaveral in 1969, while in the U.S. on a Rotary exchange. Although he hasn’t managed to walk on the moon himself (yet), he received at least one letter each week addressed to ‘Neil Armstrong’ – an easy mistake.
The Armstrong Murray team would like to thank Neil for his enormous contribution to the firm, our clients and the community at large. We’ll miss his beaming smile, funny stories, enduring hairstyle and words of wisdom in the office every day.
We wish him well as he enters the next chapter of his life.