USS Greeneville Returns to Pearl Harbor

USS Greeneville (SSN 772) returned to Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam after completing a six-month deployment to the Western Pacific region, Dec. 14.

USS Greeneville (SSN 772) moors to the pier at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam Dec. 14 as she returns from a six-month deployment to the Western Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Steven Khor)

USS Greeneville (SSN 772) moors to the pier at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam Dec. 14 as she returns from a six-month deployment to the Western Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Steven Khor)

“Greeneville is proud to return to Pearl Harbor after an extremely successful six month deployment having not only achieved the national goals assigned to her, but also having served as ambassadors of American goodwill in three countries, “said Cmdr. Martin Muckian, Greeneville’s commanding officer.

The Los Angeles-class submarine completed a variety of operations and several training exercises throughout the deployment, contributing to the nation’s strategic posture in the region. Greeneville also strengthened relationships between the United States and the Republic of Korea during a multinational exercise with the Korean Naval Forces.

With about 60 percent of the crew making their first Western Pacific deployment, the crew had the opportunity for invaluable training and unique experiences. During the deployment, 26 enlisted Sailors became submarine qualified and are now entitled to wear the enlisted submarine warfare insignia. A large number of the crew also completed advanced qualifications, including Engineering Watch Supervisor, Diving Officer of the Watch, and Chief of the Watch. These qualifications will ensure that Greeneville’s performance will remain strong following deployment.

“For many of the crew this will be one of the few times in their life to experience foreign cultures first hand,” said Master Chief Electronics Technician Marcus Hensley, Greeneville’s chief of the boat.

With more than 34,000 nautical miles steamed and multiple challenging operations completed, the crew had the opportunity to enjoy several ports visits including Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines, Saipan and Singapore, during their six month months away from Pearl Harbor. While in Singapore, the Sailors assisted the Riding for the Disabled Association, a non-profit organization that offers free horse rides to those with disabilities. The Sailors helped clean and performed maintenance on the association’s facilities.

Video – Kapoho Eruption 1960

Short version of the 1960 Kapoho, Hawaii volcanic eruption. Highlights include ground cracks, lava fountaining, aerial views, diversion attempts, evacuation of homes, pahoehoe and aa, and black sand formation.

A house catches on fire in Kapoho.

A house catches on fire in Kapoho.

Filmed by Fred Rackle, narrated by David Carvalho.


See the full version of this video, narrated by Rackle himself, at:

Videos From The 2012 Hawaii Digital Government Summit

The 2012 Hawaii Digital Government Summit was held on Tuesday, December 11, 2012 at the Hilton Hawaiian Village in Waikiki on Oahu.

Hawaii Digital Government Summit

Here are some videos from the summit:

Alan Cox, Center for Digital Government, kicks off the Hawaii Digital Government Summit that took place at Honolulu, Hawaii on December 11, 2012:


Opening remarks given by the Sanjeev “Sonny” Bhagowalia, Chief Information Officer, State of Hawaii:


Governor Neil Abercrombie, State of Hawaii, delivers the opening keynote: Transforming Government in the New Day:


Sanjeev “Sonny” Bhagowalia, Chief Information Officer, State of Hawaii, presents during the general session: Top 10 Projects of the State of Hawaii Business and IT/IRM Transformation Plan:


Waikiki-Diamond Head Shoreline Fisheries Management Area to Close for One Year

The Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) will close the Waikiki-Diamond Head Shoreline Fisheries Management Area (FMA) to fishing for one year, from Tuesday, Jan. 1, 2013, through Dec. 31, 2013, to allow fish population to replenish itself.

Waikiki-Diamond Head Shoreline Fisheries Management Area

“Periodically closing areas to fishing was a practice used by early Hawaiians; it helped fish populations replenish themselves,” said William J. Aila, Jr., DLNR chairperson. “We use a variation of that at Waikiki-Diamond Head for the same purpose. Closed years give fish a break from fishing pressure, and allow their populations to increase. Fishing experiences are then improved during open years.”

The fisheries management area encompasses the nearshore waters between the ‘Ewa wall of the Waikiki War Memorial Natatorium and the Diamond Head Lighthouse, and from the high-water mark on shore to a minimum seaward distance of 500 yards (or to the edge of the fringing reef if one occurs beyond 500 yards).

The FMA is regulated by the department’s administrative rule, Chapter 13-48. It is prohibited to fish for, take or injure any marine life (including eggs) or to possess in the water any fishing gear during the “closed to fishing” period.

Fishing is also not allowed at any time in the adjoining Waikiki Marine Life Conservation District (MLCD) between the ‘Ewa edge of the Natatorium and the ‘Ewa edge of the Kapahulu groin (seawall).

Anyone who violates the provisions of this rule may be guilty of a petty misdemeanor, and /or subject to an administrative fine.

Copies of the administrative rule, Chapter 13-48, are available at the Division of Aquatic Resources office, 1151 Punchbowl St., Rm. 330; in the Hawai‘i Fishing Regulations booklet (available at most sporting goods stores); or on the DLNR website:


Second Annual New Year’s Sunrise Hike and Oli at Makapuu

The Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) invites the public to the second annual New Year’s Day hike on Sunday, Jan. 1, 2013, along the scenic Makapuu lighthouse trail at the Ka Iwi State Scenic Shoreline, located in East Oahu.

The Makapuu trail is an old and paved lighthouse management road that leads to the summit of Makapuu ridge. On this day only, Division of State Parks staff will open the gate along Kalanianaole highway for vehicle parking in the trail parking lot at 5:30 a.m. (parking is first-come, first-served).

Photo by Kelvin Lu

Photo by Kelvin Lu

Last year the parking lot was full by 5:45 a.m., with the balance of cars parking along the highway. Approximately 500 people attended last year’s event and enjoyed a spectacular sunrise. Curt Cottrell, assistant State Parks administrator, will once again go to bed early on New Year’s Eve in order to open the gate early for parking and then be at the top to also see the sunrise. Everyone is invited to gather at the trail’s end and along the side on Makapuu ridge to watch the sun rise at 7:09 a.m. As the sun comes up on the horizon between sea and sky, like last year a chanter will offer a traditional Hawaiian oli to greet the first sunrise of the 2013.

The morning hike is just one of about 550 “First Day” hikes being observed in all U.S. states, an initiative of the America’s State Parks organization to promote healthy lifestyles and encourage year-round recreation at state parks. For more information go to

Due to the lack of comfort stations at this location, Division of State Parks is providing a modest amount of portable toilets for the event. The 1.5-mile round trip on the access road is considered of moderate difficulty and suited for children of any age (strollers are welcome). Pets must remain on leash at all times and any droppings removed by owner and properly disposed of. Bring windbreakers, supportive shoes, warm beverages and cameras! Pack out all of your rubbish.

For more information about the First Day – Makapuu Lighthouse Trail hike, call the Division of State Parks at 587-0300.


Jesse Sapolu Left His Heart in San Francisco – Comes to the Big Island for a Book Signing

Last week on Tuesday, December 4th, former San Francisco 49er’s star Jesse Sapolu spent the day on the Big Island and ended the evening with a public book signing and auction to benefit the Hawaii Island United Way at Cronies Bar & Grill in downtown Hilo, Hawaii.

Jesse Sapolu signs a book for me!

Jesse Sapolu signs a book for me!

More then 100 folks turned out for the event and it was a huge success.

Jesse spent more then 2 hours signing books for fans.

Jesse spent more then 2 hours signing books for fans.

His book is entitled “I Gave My Heart to San Francisco” and in the book he talks about growing up in Hawaii amongst other things.  Check out this video created by Camille Keawekane-Stafford:


You can just see how happy fans were to meet the future Hall of Famer as the guy is the only player from Hawaii to have FOUR Superbowl rings!

Fans are stoked to meet the four time super bowl champion!

Fans are stoked to meet the four time super bowl champion!

I asked Jesse if he could answer a few questions and answers I had for him and this is what he told me:

Q: What was your favorite NFL team growing up?

A: Los Angeles Rams

Q: What inspired you to write a book?

A: My son Roman had a teammate die last year just playing recreational basketball at Oregon St, they found out he had an enlarged heart. I’ve been asked for a while to share my story but sitting there at my friend Jr Seau’s funeral made me realize how very fragile and short life is and if my story can save a life of a kid with an enlarged heart by getting early treatment then I owe it to them to share it.

Q: What are your favorite food(s)?

A: All Polynesian foods especially poke and bbq turkey tails (lol)

Q: Why did you choose the number 61?

A: It was available and it was my birth year.

Q: Who do you think will win the Superbowl this year?

A: 49ers versus Texans, Niners win it all

Q:  What would you like to say to kids here on the Big Island in General?

A: Believe in yourself, don’t be afraid to dream then work on a plan to accomplish it.

I felt very honored and humbled to meet the legend himself as well as his lovely wife Lisa that he met on a flight when she was working.  They are currently doing more book signings to benefit the United Way and you can see the schedule of his tour on his website.

Jesse and wife

You can check out Jesse’s website if you weren’t able to make the book signing if you are interested in purchasing a book: