SIR Moti Tikaram, one of Fiji's most distinguished statesmen, has passed away after a short illness.
He was 87.
As friends and families gathered to remember the life of a man whose career spanned a lifetime of service to the country he loved the most, tributes started to flow in from around the country and abroad.
"My father loved his home, he was a man full of life and he loved his Fiji," his son, Anil Tikaram, said yesterday.
Sir Moti, as he was fondly known, was a man of the people and his children grew up meeting different people on his ambassadorial engagements and during his work in the country as "the first of everything".
"He was the first local magistrate, judge, ombudsman and even acting chief justice, he excelled in everything and he achieved so many things with his attitude towards hard work."
Mr Tikaram said his father was a family man and the death of his wife, Satya Wati, in 1981 did not deter him from the commitment he had to his children.
"He was always a very supportive father, a family man, very gregarious and encouraged us to give our best on everything we did."
Sir Moti was born and bred in Lami and his parents owned the Lami buses and the largest fleet of taxis in the country.
"But he was the only one who didn't go into the family business, he decided to study and get a job in his own right and eventually founded Tikaram and Company after he became a lawyer."
Mr Tikaram said his father would be missed by the Tikaram family and friends in Fiji and abroad.
He said Sir Moti set an example as a true son of Fiji.
Sir Moti's health had slowly deteriorated after a bout of illness and partial hip replacement surgery in December last year.
He passed away on Thursday May 17 at the Suva Private Hospital.
Funeral arrangements are still being finalised.