Possum Bourne, New Zealand's most successful rally driver died peacefully surrounded by his wife Peggy and their family in Dunedin Hospital at 12.58 am (NZ time) today, Wednesday 30 April.
Possum never regained consciousness after being involved in a traffic accident on the Snow Farm Rd in the Cardrona Valley near Lake Wanaka in Central Otago on Good Friday, April 18.
He was air lifted from the crash site with head injuries and two broken legs to Dunedin Hospital where he remained in the Intensive Care Unit in an induced coma ever since.
Possum's wife Peggy, his mother, two sisters, brother, other close family members and friends have maintained a 24 hour bedside vigil over the past 12 days.
Possum's medical condition has been monitored constantly, including several CT Scans.
In the accident he suffered a rotational head injury, resulting in diffuse axonal injury, and over the week developed multiple areas of brain infarction.
Following a series of neurological tests and the latest scan a decision was made in the best interests of Possum to withdraw the life support system gradually from Monday afternoon.
On behalf of Possum's family I would like to thank the staff at Dunedin Hospital for all the care they have lavished on Possum.
The family would also like to acknowledge the thousands of emails, faxes, cards, flowers and other messages of support they have received over the last 12 days.
At this time the family does not wish to make any personal statements and I would ask you respect their position and not intrude in their time of grief.
Possum is survived by his wife Peggy and three children, Taylor (8), Spencer (4) and Jazlin (3).
Funeral details will be announced at a later date.
Possum was a great man. A great sportsman and New Zealander. A great son, brother, husband, father and friend. His spirit and memory will live on.
Once again, RIP Possum and condolences to his family.