Kato Ottio

Vikings raise over K36,000 for Ottio

From their official Facebook page, the club posted: “Wow – the crowdfunder to help support Kato’s loved ones has now passed the £10,000 mark. Your kindness is incredible. Let’s keep on spreading the word.”

But that was not all the Widnes Vikings have done.

The club that Ottio signed with last year had his name printed on their all jerseys and held a minute’s silence before their 62-0 triumph over Whitehaven at Halton Stadium this weekend.

(Photo credit: Widnes Vikings RL Club)

Kato pushed back Dragons deal, reveals brother

The shocking news was revealed yesterday by elder brother, Ahulo Ottio, when he delivered his brother’s eulogy in front of over 2,000 people that flocked in to pay their respects at the Sir John Guise Stadium indoor complex.

“He actually had the option to join St George but that contract came with a condition. That condition was to forgo the World Cup and undergo surgery.


A country mourns

They turned up in the hundreds, and they kept on coming. People from all walks of life poured in today to the Sir John Guise Stadium to pay their respects to the gentle giant from a mixed parentage of Koiari, Tatana and Bougainville.

Tears flowed freely as the coffin of the 23-year-old star was carried in to the indoor complex by his SP Hunters and PNG Kumuls teammates.

CEO of the PNG Rugby Football League, Reatau Rau, said today’s funeral was about celebrating Kato Ottio’s life.


Trust fund to fulfil Ottio’s dream

Before officially handing over the body to Ottio’s family at the funeral service held today, Chairman of the PNGRFL, Sandis Tsaka, said the Kato Ottio Trust Fund was opened yesterday.

He said Ottio had always dreamt of building a house for his mother, Joyce, and the PNGRFL wanted to make this dream come true in honour of the late SP Hunters and PNG LNG Kumuls star.

Tsaka welcomed contributions from the general public who wish to assist by depositing money into the Trust Fund.

He said the account will be closed next Thursday, January 18, at 12pm.

Boas tearfully remembers Ottio

Hunters Captain Ase Boas read a very touching and meaningful poem from the Hunters camp, solely dedicated to their late teammate – Kato Ottio.

Speaking at the funeral service today, Boas struggled to hold back tears, describing Ottio as a “great friend of humble character”.

An emotional Boas also relayed condolences from current Kumuls captain, David Mead, who was unable to make it to the funeral.

Boas, who is the vice captain of the Kumuls, spoke of how he knew Ottio personally, saying he was a real “mummy's boy”.

Hundreds pack Ottio’s funeral service

Hundreds of fans have packed the indoor complex to show their final respects to the 23-year-old phenomenal sports man.

Late Ottio's casket arrived at the Sir John Guise indoor stadium carried by his Kumuls and former Hunters teammates.

In attendance is Moresby South and Lands Minister Justin Tkatchenko, Vice Sports Minister Wesley Raminai and other senior statesmen.

The funeral service celebrant, Reverand Oika Gabutu, has taken the podium to deliver the sermon of the day.

More to follow…

Canberra Raiders host late Ottio’s memorial

At 7.30am this morning, the NRL Rugby League club held a memorial service at the Holy Trinity Church, Curtin, for the young Kumul player gone way too soon.

The service was open to members and fans who wanted to pay their final respects to Ottio.

The former Mounties star died earlier this week, sending shockwaves through the rugby league world.

The late Ottio would have departed PNG shores for the United Kingdom today to join Widnes Vikings along with fellow Kumul teammate, Albert Wellington.

Hunters players to be counselled

Ottio, who had been due to fly to England with Kumuls teammate Wellington Albert on Thursday to join Super League club Widnes, passed away at the Pacific International Hospital in Port Moresby at 2am on Tuesday after collapsing during a road run on Sunday.

Hunters players held a bedside vigil for the 23-year-old, who had asked to join the session with the Queensland Cup premiers at short notice.

Widnes Vikings establish funding drive for Ottio

The phenomenal response has matched the overwhelming tragedy of a young man, on the verge of living his dream, being taken away from us too soon.

The club in a tribute stated that their “Our priority now turns to how we can celebrate the life of a member of our team, and support his family. Whilst Kato was yet to arrive in our town, he was, and always will be, a Viking”.

Remembering Kato

As a club, Widnes Vikings have committed to making a private donation to Kato’s family to support them at this difficult time.

Their site read:

Ottio funeral on Friday

PNGRFL Chairman, SandisTsaka said that a post mortem will be carried out on late Kato Ottio tonight.

“The family early this afternoon agreed for a post mortem to be done to determine the cause of death,” Tsaka said.

“Therefore the funeral service will now be held on Friday morning.”

Kato Ottio will be buried at the 9 Mile cemetery outside Port Moresby later in the afternoon on Friday.