I have never actually met Sir Paul Holmes, but I feel like I know him.
I think many people throughout the country feel that way because he has been their mate during the good times and the bad.
It is a tribute to his talent and effectiveness as a broadcaster that he was part of the family for many years through his morning radio and evening television shows.
He was there when New Zealanders awoke and he joined them for dinner as well. He was able to spar intelligently with politicians, but had the human touch to connect with everyday people - sharing their joy and sorrow.
It is for these reasons that his investiture at his farm outside Hastings yesterday was befitting of a man who has been such a part of our lives.
Sir Paul's family had requested that the ceremony be brought forward because of his ill health and Governor-General Sir Jerry Mateparae also agreed to hold it at the farm.
Sir Paul said yesterday that his health was not good, but he was clearly moved by the ceremony.
It is also testament to his standing in the country that at least two Prime Ministers - John Key and Jenny Shipley - were in attendance, as was the Leader of the Opposition David Shearer and many other well-known faces from all walks of life.
He deserved all the accolades he received yesterday for his massive contribution to society and for being a very good journalist. If there was a big story on, he was the one people turned to for the latest updates.
As a radio host, he had a unique style, but he had an ability to cut through and get to the bottom of a story. His current affairs show almost always had the interview everyone wanted to watch.
Sir Paul may have said goodbye to his distinguished career, but he will remain the nation's friend. He deserves time with his family and he can feel a sense of pride in what he has achieved.