The Vanuatu Judo Federation (VJF) has conveyed its condolence to the families of one of its judokas, late Romain Rivier who passed away from cancer.
Late Rivier was a member of the VJF who was due to receive his black belt last December, however he couldn’t make it due to his illness.
Port Vila Judo club Communications officer, Nazario Fiakaifonu said late Rivier’s brother collected the black belt on his behalf.
According to late Rivier’s brother, Romain arrived in Port Vila at the age of 5. He grew up in Vanuatu, which he considered to be his homeland. He studied at the Lycée Français de Port Vila from 1994 to 2003.
“During these years he attended the Judo Club of Port-Vila with assiduity. He finished his secondary studies at the Lycée Jules Garnier in Nouméa in 2006. In 2007, he joined the National School of Active NCOs in St-Maixent, specializing in Civil Engineering. Then from 2008 to 2015, it was with the 3rd combat helicopter regiment in Etain that he obtained his construction supervisor diploma. He carried out commando training courses and became a shooting instructor.
“From 2015 to 2020, he was stationed at the Nîmes-Garons military base. Then Staff Sergeant, he carried out several missions in Reunion, the Scattered Islands, Lebanon and French Polynesia. A sportsman at heart, he continued judo and also stood out in rugby. He also joined the Pacific XV of the French army and in 2018 toured New Caledonia.
“Romain was a passionate and generous man. He had found happiness with his partner Emilie Donjon and his two little daughters, Aïnhoa and Amaïa. He had many projects and some obviously concerned Vanuatu. Romain Rivier, this native of the country, sadly passed away on Monday, October 5 at the age of 31.”
Mr Fiakaifonu said the late Rivier was his best friend and his memory will live on. He added Rivier contributed immensely to the Judo club in Vanuatu.