Wordless Wednesday – Hawaii State Teachers Negotiations Update With President Wil Okabe

President Wil Tanabe

President Wil Okabe

President Wil Okabe gives teachers an update regarding the negotiations on December 10, 2012 and the State’s take-or-leave-it attitude.

 

Oahu Public Shoreline Access Information Now Available Online

Residents and visitors alike enjoy the shorelines of Oahu for a wide range of recreational activities such as fishing, swimming, surfing, and snorkeling. But historically, public access to shoreline locations has not always been obvious.

The State of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources and the Office of Planning have worked collaboratively with the City and County of Honolulu and NOAA Fisheries to review and update information defining Oahu’s public access.

“This project demonstrates how we can improve public access to coastal resources when federal, state, and county agencies combine their talents and resources toward a common goal,” said William J. Aila, Jr. DLNR chairperson.

Click to see shoreline access spots on Oahu

Click to see shoreline access spots on Oahu

Public access points can now be found on a new easy-to-use map-based website that shows locations all around Oahu that can be clicked on and zoomed to show specific location name, and other information. Go to City and County of Honolulu Shoreline Access Points (and map) at http://bit.ly/QUz56q

“This comprehensive list and map of public shoreline access points are valuable resources for local fishermen, residents, and visitors,” said Honolulu Mayor Peter Carlisle. “This is an excellent example of multiple government agencies working together to develop easily accessible information that benefits all.”

The city Department of Planning and Permitting along with the state Office of Planning will coordinate with other relevant agencies to keep the information up-to-date.

 

Police Looking for 19-Year-Old Maui Woman Who May Be in Puna

Update 2/11/13 -Hawaiʻi Island police have located 19-year-old Nhi Nguyen Tuyet Pham of Maui, who was reported missing.

She was found in good health in Puna on Sunday (February 10).

Hawaiʻi County police are searching for a 19-year-old Maui woman who was reported missing from Lakewood, Washington, where she attends college.

Nhi Nguyen Tuyet Pham

Nhi Nguyen Tuyet Pham

Nhi Nguyen Tuyet Pham may be on the island of Hawaiʻi, possibly in Puna.

Police ask that anyone with information on her whereabouts call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311 or Officer Daniel Murray at 965-2716.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona.

Big Island Police Investigating Cause of Fire and the Discovery of a Body in Honoka’a

Police are investigating the cause of a fire and the discovery of a body in a house in Honokaʻa.

HPDBadge

On Tuesday (December 11) at about 8:21 p.m., police and fire personnel responded to a home in Āhualoa in upper Honokaʻa after receiving a report of a structure fire and found the structure fully engulfed. Police determined that there was an occupant of the residence who was unaccounted for.

Police and fire personnel discovered the body after extinguishing the fire.

Detectives and an evidence specialist from the Area I Criminal Investigations Section responded and are continuing the investigation, which is classified as a fire and a coroner’s inquest.

Detectives have not released the identity of the deceased person and an autopsy will be performed to determine the cause of death.

The structure was deemed a total loss.

Police ask that anyone with information about this case contact Detective Joel Field at 961-2381 or jfield@co.hawaii.hi.us.

Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000. Crime Stoppers is a volunteer program run by ordinary citizens who want to keep their community safe. Crime Stoppers doesn’t record calls or subscribe to caller ID. All Crime Stoppers information is kept confidential.

 

Mayor Kenoi’s Site Leads to Japanese Blog Site – Healing Our “Japanese” Islands?

I was just perusing the Hawaii County Mayor’s Website and I came across this link for “Healing Our Islands”:

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

It looks like someone didn’t pay their bill for the Healing Our Islands website or something fishy is going on as when I go to that website linked on the Mayor’s site… it takes me to some sort of Japanese Blog that I can’t read:

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

Here is the alleged link to Healing Our Islands and you can see for yourself where it takes folks: http://www.healingourisland.com/

 

 

The Intergalactic Nemesis is Coming to Hawaii! Performances on Oahu, Maui and the Big Island

The Intergalactic Nemesis: Book One Target Earth performs at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo Performing Arts Center on Friday, January 11 at 7:30 pm.

Intergalatic Nemesis
“This is a one-of-a-kind all-ages show, and is definitely not to be missed!” said UH Hilo Performing Arts Center Manager Lee Dombroski. The premise is simple: a period adventure story featuring Pulitzer-winning reporter Molly Sloan, her intrepid assistant Timmy Mendez, and a mysterious librarian named Ben Wilcott as they face the most serious threat Earth has ever known: an impending invasion of sludge monsters from the planet Zygon.

“The telling is what makes the experience of The Intergalactic Nemesis so incredibly unique,” Dombroski explained. “While three actors, one Foley artist, and one keyboardist perform all the voices, sound effects and music, more than 1,000 hand-drawn, full color, hi-res, blow-your-mind comic book images blast from the screen, all performed live. Inspired by Raiders of the Lost Ark, Star Wars, and the pulp serials of the 1930s, The Intergalactic Nemesis is a spectacle unlike any other and it’s for the kid in everyone.”

Tickets are reserved seating and priced at $20 General, $15 Discount and $10 UH Hilo/HawCC students and children, up to age 17, and available by calling the UH Hilo Box Office at 974-7310 or ordering online at artscenter.uhh.hawaii.edu.

Hawaii Show Dates:

  • Wednesday, January 9, 2013 Book One: Target Earth Maui Arts & Cultural Center – Castle Theatre Kahului, Hawaii
  • Friday, January 11, 2013 Book One: Target Earth University of Hawai’i Performing Arts Center Hilo, Hawaii
  • Saturday, January 12, 2013 University of Hawai’i, Kennedy Theatre Honolulu, Hawaii

Hawaii Film “Endangered Hawai’i” Awarded International Jury Prize in EkoFilm Festival

EKofilm Festival
Endangered Hawai’i, produced by American Bird Conservancy and narrated by actor Richard Chamberlain, has been awarded the international jury prize of the EKOFILM Festival.

For more information about the film and the Endangered Birds of Hawaii see here: http://www.abcbirds.org/abcprograms/oceansandislands/hawaii/endangered_hawaii…

For more information about American Bird Conservancy’s program to protect endangered Hawaiian birds see http://www.abcbirds.org/newsandreports/releases/120822.html

Join the Movement – Transform Hawaii Government

Transform Hawaii Government:

Click for more information

Click for more information

The Movement is a non-profit grassroots organization to support the State of Hawaii’s effort to transform government through improved business practices and continued investments in technology to benefit all people of Hawaii.

Learn more at http://www.transformhawaiigov.org

Lost Campers USA Brings Budget Campervan Rentals to the Big Island

Lost Campers USA, the fast-growing company that set the standard for quality campervan rentals on the West Coast, is crossing the Pacific to open in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii on January 2, 2013. Owners Nick and Emma Thomson intend to bring their unique style of ultimate customer service to one of the most incredible locations in the world, offering adventurous travelers an alternative to hotels and vacation home rentals. Nick Thomson comments, “The best way to explore the natural riches of this beautiful tropical destination is by driving and camping. Lost Campers Campervan Rental Hawaii allows vacationers the opportunity to travel all over the big island in comfort, providing great versatility for a modest price.”

Sierra Top

Sierra Class

With offices in San Francisco and Los Angeles and over 75 campervans for hire, Lost Campers USA has, since 2008, been the top rental agency for travelers wishing to experience California and the West by campervan. The Los Angeles office has been open two years, and in that time, has proven the viability of campervan rentals as a successful travel business.

Amidst the recent economic downturn, campervans remain a popular means of travel, especially for families and those visiting the U.S. from abroad. Lost Campers’ new big island location is the perfect venue for the company’s expansion, as the island is teaming with wildlife, rainforests, waterfalls, hiking trails, pristine beaches, national parks and lava fields for travelers to explore by camping.

Sierra Class

Sierra Class

Hawaii campervan rentals will open with ten vehicles in January, and expand as the market demands. The agency will offer Lost Campers’ Sierra class vans which feature the amenities that have made campervans so popular — full-size platform bed, inside storage, side awning, camp kitchen kit, fresh linens, stereo, storage and seating for four passengers. The Hotel Sierra campervan also features a rooftop tent. Lost Campers’ Big Island campervans start at just $75/day. Located just 10 minutes from Kona International Airport in Keahole, Lost Campers USA offers shuttle service to and from the rental facility. To learn more or to book a van, go to www.lostcampersusa.com and click on the Hawaii page or call 1-888-567-8826 (888-LOST-VAN) or 1-415-386-2693.

Hawaii Rises to Second Healthiest State in Nation

The Trust for America’s Health today ranked Hawaii as the second healthiest state in the nation behind Vermont. Hawaii moved ahead of two other states this year from last year’s health ranking of fourth. In its 23rd year, the annual America’s Health Rankings is the longest running comparative health index of states. For overall health, Hawaii consistently ranks in the top five states each year.

Hawaii Rank

Click for more information on Hawaii’s rankings

“This year’s improved ranking is encouraging and reflects the efforts of Governor Abercrombie and the work of the department to improve the health of our state,” said Health Director Loretta Fuddy. “The state has taken many positive steps in the last year, but chronic disease and obesity are still major growing concerns, especially when it comes to our children. We must turn the tide on these issues for our next generation.”

The report noted that while Hawaii has one of the lowest obesity rates in the nation, there are still roughly 234,000 obese adults in the state. Also noted were an improvement in infant mortality from 7.6 to 5.8 deaths per 1,000 live births, and a decrease in preventable hospitalizations from 32.2 to 25.0 discharges per 1,000 Medicare enrollees. While the prevalence of diabetes in Hawaii is below the national median at 8.4 percent, the state’s climbing rate reflects the troubling nationwide trend of increasing chronic disease. According to the report, roughly 90,000 adults in Hawaii are living with diabetes. Additional areas of high concern for the state include the rate of health disparities among ethnicities and rural areas. Page 2 Hawaii Rises to Second Healthiest State in the Nation

This includes higher rates of tobacco use and obesity among Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders.

“Because the measures used in the rankings reflect the condition of the ‘average’ resident, the report can mask serious health disparities within our island state,” said Director Fuddy. “In Hawaii there are often startling differences between ethnic groups and rural areas of the state that should not be ignored.”

“Hawaii’s positive ranking is encouraging, but there are areas that will require our continued attention as we work collaboratively with our partners in the healthcare industry and the federal government toward the implementation of the Affordable Healthcare Act,” said Beth Giesting, who was appointed by the Governor as Hawaii’s Healthcare Transformation Coordinator. “It is important that we identify what is working well, while zeroing in on where we can improve as a state. This will require Hawaii continuing to be a leader in shaping its healthcare future, as exhibited in October when the state proactively selected its healthcare benchmark benefits package.”

America’s Health Rankings include measures of behavior, community and environment, public and health policies, clinical care, and health outcomes to describe the health and wellness of each state compared to the other states. Updated each year since 1990, the rankings are sponsored by United Health Foundation and conducted in partnership with the American Public Health Association and the Partnership for Prevention. The 2012 report released today is available at www.americashealthrankings.org/rankings.

 

Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival Dedicated to the Late Anne Field-Gomes

The 20th Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival on Saturday, Feb. 2 is dedicated to the late Anne Field-Gomes. The Waimea resident served on numerous community organizations, including the Cherry Blossom Festival’s organizing committee. Mrs. Field-Gomes died October 23; she was 84.

Anne Field-Gomes and her husband David

Anne Field-Gomes and her husband David

Field-Gomes and her husband, David, will be recognized at the festival’s opening ceremony. Time is 9 a.m. on the entertainment stage at the rear of Parker Ranch Center.

“Anne was the hostess for the Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival; she’d walk among the venues to make sure all was going well,” says Roxcie Waltjen, festival coordinator, who serves as the culture and education administrator for Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation. “Both Anne and David were very involved and supportive of the festival.”

A dedicated volunteer, Field-Gomes was selected as the female Outstanding Older American for Hawai‘i Island in 1999. She was active for 20 years in AARP’s Tax Aid program and also volunteered for the Waimea Community Association, the South Kohala Traffic Safety Committee, the Friends of Thelma Parker Library and Trails and Greenways.

The Honolulu native was a 10-year volunteer at North Hawai‘i Community Hospital, working in the materials division, and she was active with the Hawaii County Democratic Party. She was also a member of St. James Church, Imiola Congregational Church, the Waimea Outdoor Circle and the Waimea Pupule Papale Red Hat Club.

Field-Gomes moved to the Big Island in 1986.  Anne and David Gomes were married in 1989 during a square dance at Waimea’s Kahilu Town Hall, the same year Anne moved to Waimea.

“Anne enjoyed participating in the community and recruited me for many of her activities,” says David Gomes.

In addition to honoring Anne and David Gomes, the festival will mark its 20th year with an anniversary exhibit, entertainment by some of the festival’s first performers and a commemorative poster, which will be offered for sale.

For two decades, the free community festival has showcased the 60-year-old cherry trees planted at Church Row Park and the Japanese tradition of viewing them—hanami. The event, held annually the first Saturday of February, includes a variety of activities 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at venues throughout Waimea—look for pink banners identifying site locations from the Parker Ranch Historic Homes on Mamalahoa Hwy. 190 to the Hawaiian Homestead Farmer’s Market on Hwy. 19.

Spend the day to experience an all-day lineup of Japanese and multi-cultural performing arts, plus hands-on demonstrations of bonsai, origami, traditional tea ceremony, fun mochi pounding and a host of colorful craft fairs. Enjoy free shuttle transportation among most venues. For info, 808-961-8706.

Big Island Police Warning Residents to Prevent Holiday Burglaries

HPDBadge

Big Island police are advising the public to take extra precautions to prevent burglaries during the holiday season and to report suspicious activities—especially suspicious persons in your neighborhood during the day or at night. The following tips can help reduce the chances of burglary in your neighborhood:

  • Lock your doors and windows when you leave your home, including those in the rear of the house that aren’t visible from the street.
  • Be cautious of posting your location on social networking sites as they can be used by criminals to determine if you are home.
  • Become familiar with your neighbors and their cars.
  • If you see unfamiliar vehicles driving around your neighborhood, note the description of the vehicle, the license plate number and descriptions of any occupants and report them to police.
  • Beware of strangers knocking on doors. They may be burglars checking to see if a house is unoccupied. Report suspicious persons coming to your home to police immediately.
  • Don’t leave a house key hidden outside your home.
  • Keep your home well lit.
  • Keep trees and bushes trimmed so they don’t provide cover for burglars.
  • If you come home and see evidence that someone has been in your home or may still be there, leave the area and call police immediately.
  • Ask your neighbors to report any suspicious persons and vehicles seen at or near your home.

If you suspect a burglary is in progress or if you encounter any suspicious person on your property, call 911. To report suspicious persons in your neighborhood, call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311. Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona.

Big Island RN Returns from 10-Day Deployment in Helping with Relief Efforts Related to Superstorm Sandy

North Hawaii Community Hospital RN and Infection Prevention Coordinator, Jennifer Rabalais, returned from a ten-day deployment with the Hawaii Disaster Medical Assistance Team (DMAT) to assist in relief efforts related to Superstorm Sandy.

Hawaii DMAT is a trained corps of 75 medical professionals who respond to calls for medical surge, disaster and humanitarian assistance throughout the United States and the Pacific Region and provide on-scene, high-acuity casualty care services within 2 to 4 hours of request. Hawaii DMAT is part of HAH Emergency Services, a division of the Healthcare Association of Hawaii, which provides emergency preparedness and operations management services to over 115 health-care coalition members throughout the state of Hawaii, including hospitals, nursing homes, assisted living facilities, home care and hospice, air and ground ambulance, blood banks and clinical laboratories.

North Hawaii Community Hospital RN and Infection Prevention Coordinator, Jennifer Rabalais

North Hawaii Community Hospital RN and Infection Prevention Coordinator, Jennifer Rabalais

Rabalais and 24 fellow Hawaii DMAT members were deployed to New York on November 12, in conjunction with another response team from Alaska, to help medical shelter areas consolidate and relieve exhausted federally-deployed disaster workers. The Hawaii-Alaska Team split into three medical response task force teams assigned to different facilities throughout the region.

“I was assigned to a shelter called Park Slope in Brooklyn, New York, that housed nearly 600 people following the storm, but was down to around 150 when we arrived,” said Rabalais. “The remaining occupants had been residents of an assisted-living facility that was destroyed by flood waters. We provided acute medical care for shelter occupants and volunteers who had developed illnesses or injuries, in addition to overseeing the closure of the facility, as the last occupants were transferred to a more permanent situation while their facility was to be rebuilt.”

“I was touched by the many volunteer musicians who performed for the shelter occupants daily,” says Rabalais. “One of these performers was a young man in his 20s, who took the trouble to learn songs that were popular among the residents’ age group . . . he had quite a repertoire and gladly took requests. On the day everyone was moving out, tensions and apprehension were in the air; this young man and two others played music for over six solid hours, creating a calming and pleasant atmosphere for what was a trying day.”

Rabalais has also deployed with Hawaii DMAT to Guam to provide relief after a hurricane hit Saipan, as well as staffed an Acute Care Module in Kapiolani Park on Oahu during the Asia-Pacific Economic Conference (APEC) last November.

“NHCH is incredibly proud of the service Jennifer provides as a member of the Hawaii DMAT team,” says Lorrie Mortensen, NHCH Vice President of Patient Care Services and Chief Nursing Officer. “Jennifer’s expertise and commitment to emergency preparedness is a wonderful asset to our patients, hospital, community and country.”

“I am extremely privileged to work with Hawaii DMAT,” says Rabalais. “It is some of the hardest work I have ever done, but it is very rewarding. My Hawaii DMAT teammates are an incredible and talented group of people. I am very grateful NHCH has been understanding and supportive of my work with DMAT, making it possible for me to continue to participate in relief work such as this. ”

Jennifer has been NHCH’s Infection Prevention Coordinator since 2005 and is one of approximately 5,000 practitioners worldwide who are certified in Infection Control by the Certification Board of Infection Control and Epidemiology, Inc. (CBIC). As NHCH’s Infection Prevention Coordinator, Rabalais is responsible for providing infection control orientation for hospital staff, identifying and assessing the educational needs of hospital staff and providing leadership and consultation to staff in order to monitor infection control procedures in accordance with hospital policies. Jennifer is also responsible for identifying the occurrence of outbreaks or clusters of infectious diseases and monitoring nosocomial infections and antibiotic usage.

 

“GLOW 5-0″ – Drug and Drink Free Teen Party at KBXtreme in Kailua-Kona

Unlimited bowling, unlimited music and dancing make “GLOW 5-0″ the hottest event of the season, created by teens for teens.  Happening Sunday, December 16, from 7 to 11 p.m. at KBXtreme in Kailua-Kona, the “straight edge rager” is a youth-only, action-packed night with nonstop dance music by DJs, black lights and glow sticks, bowling, prizes and “no drugs, no drunks and no drama.”

Glow 5-0

Glow 5-0

GLOW 5-0 is presented by the Lifeplan Youth Leadership-West Hawaii and the North Hawaii Lifeplan Youth Leadership Team, and is the second annual event, planned and delivered by the teens themselves.   Last year’s event rallied over 100 youth aged 13-19 and this year’s goal is 300 or more.

“They want to party, and party doesn’t automatically mean drinking and drugs,” said Lifeplan youth mentor Kei-Lin Cerf, “Just everybody being in the same place… playing the music they want to dance to.”

The youth team created the theme, designed a flyer and posted a Facebook event page with the latest updates and RSVPs.  They recruited DJ Chad, DJ Jared, DJ Ohm Grown, plus youth performers, Concept, JTheory and Steve Kim to help keep the dance floor energized.  Their dress code guidelines suggest that ragers “dress to impress” – with fluorescent rave outfits like shorts and tank tops OK, but no bikini tops or swimsuit-like bottoms.  Outfits can be flashy and wild, but not overly revealing.

They strongly emphasize that no one “under the influence” will be admitted, with no re-entries once teens are inside.  “What’s important for the teens is to show there are options, there are choices,” said Cerf.  “They see their peers, their family and friends making dangerous choices, and they want to prove it’s possible to have a fantastic clean and sober party.”

Tickets are $7 at the door, $5 pre-sale, available from Team members at Kealakehe High School, or at KBXtreme and Mama’s House in Waimea.  Parents may drop young people off, go enjoy dinner or holiday shopping and return to pick them up.  Adult chaperones will watch the exits, and discreetly monitor GLOW 5-0 to help keep kids safe.

“We’ve been blessed with adult supporters who believe in what these teens are doing,” said Cerf, “and our hope is that more community members step up and help the youth provide much-needed, and really good, activities for people their own age.”

Organizers are recruiting adult chaperones; lane sponsors, prizes and donations.  Lane sponsorships are only $150 for the full night of bowling.  Small prizes such as $10 gift cards for pizza or shopping make the perfect prize donation.  To help, please call Kei-Lin Cerf at 896-6110.

GLOW 5-0 is supported by Four Seasons Resort Hualalai, Lifeplan founder Andy and Kate Mecca, Mama’s House, Bob and Becky Holman, Waikoloa Irrigation and Landscape Maintenance, North Hawaii Drug-Free Coalition, Models Not Bottles, Big Island Substance Abuse Council and others, with the assistance of KBXtreme, Purevybe Entertainment, Native FM-Pacific Radio Group, Body Glove Cruises, Project Grad and Randy Shelor, graphic arts teacher at Kealakehe High School.

The Lifeplan Youth Leadership teams are part of Lifeplan Institute Hawaii Island, a creative youth mentoring program, committed to providing 5,000 island teens with a goal-driven “Lifeplan” by 2015. For more information, visit www.lifeplanhawaii.org

New Restrooms Slated for Reed’s Bay Beach Park in Hilo

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Parks and Recreation is pleased to announce the construction of new restrooms at Reed’s Bay Beach Park in Hilo.

Reeds Bay Sign

Isemoto Contracting Co. Ltd. has been awarded a $568,920 contract to build the comfort station and perform related site improvements. Work is scheduled to start Monday, December 10, and be finished next April.

Reeds Bay off Banyan Drive

Reeds Bay off Banyan Drive

The park will be kept open during the construction period, although the active construction areas at the site will be cordoned off to ensure the public’s safety. Portable bathrooms will continue to be provided for the public’s use until the new facility is opened.

Reeds Bay Wide

A previous $690,000 renovation project completed at Reed’s Bay Beach Park in April of this year provided new sidewalks and paved walkways, new seat walls, outdoor showers, a drinking fountain, picnic tables, and landscaping. Also, Eagle Scout Chase Tanaka of Troop 78 provided additional landscaping enhancements and two new accessible picnic tables for the public to enjoy.

For more information, please contact Jason Armstrong, Public Information Officer, at 345-9105, or jarmstrong@co.hawaii.hi.us.

 

National Park Service and Pacific Historic Parks Sponsor First-Ever Reading Aloud Event

National Park Service and Pacific Historic Parks Sponsor First-Ever December 7th Reading Aloud Event with 6,000-Plus Students across Hawaii—11 Big Island School Participate

Every December 7th, thousands of people from around the world gather at the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center in Honolulu to pay tribute to the thousands of military service members and civilians who lost their lives in the name of freedom in 1941.  For the few surviving Pearl Harbor survivors who are able to make the trek to this sacred place, their message to future generations is clear:  Remember Pearl Harbor, the tremendous sacrifice that was made that day, and the terrible consequences of war.

USS Ronald Reagan

PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii (Aug. 31, 2011) Sailors and Marines render honors as the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) passes the USS Arizona Memorial while entering Pearl Harbor for a port visit. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Kevin B. Gray

For the first time ever, the National Park Service and Pacific Historic Parks shared the historical significance of that day with 6,000-plus school-age children across Hawaii with a simultaneous reading aloud program at 3 p.m. on December 7.

Through the Department of Education’s and the Island of Hawaii YMCA’s A+ Afterschool Care Programs, Big Island students at 11 schools joined their peers from across the state in learning about the real life story of an unlikely friendship between the late Pearl Harbor Survivor Richard Fiske and Japanese Fighter Pilot Zenji Abe.

Thousands of elementary and intermediate school children in A+ Afterschool Care Programs heard the true life story of an unlikely friendship between Pearl Harbor survivor Richard Fiske and Japanese diver-bomb pilot Zenji Abe through the reading of “Pearl Harbor Warriors: The Bugler, The Pilot, The Friendship.”

Thousands of elementary and intermediate school children in A+ Afterschool Care Programs heard the true life story of an unlikely friendship between Pearl Harbor survivor Richard Fiske and Japanese diver-bomb pilot Zenji Abe through the reading of “Pearl Harbor Warriors: The Bugler, The Pilot, The Friendship.”

Participating Hawaii Island schools included De Silva Elementary, Keaukaha Elementary, St. Joseph School, Keaau Elementary, Honokaa Elementary, Waimea Elementary, Kohala Elementary, Kealakehe Elementary, Holualoa Elementary, Kamehameha Schools and the YMCA’s Club Y Teens program.

The children’s book, entitled “Pearl Harbor Warriors: The Bugler, The Pilot, The Friendship,” is a story of peace and forgiveness and how these men, who were once enemies of war, overcame their hatred and fear for one another.

“As stewards of the USS Arizona Memorial and World War II Valor in the Pacific National Monument, the National Park Service’s mission is to preserve and share the history of the Pacific War, including what took place at Pearl Harbor 71 years ago,” said National Park Service Superintendent Paul DePrey.

“Sharing the message of peace and reconciliation amongst thousands of young children across Hawaii is significant.  The story of Richard Fiske and Zenji Abe is proof that through friendship and peace, we can make this a better world for future generations.”

Pearl Harbor Book

Pacific Historic Parks purchased 175 copies of the book to provide to each participating school. Pacific Historic Parks, a cooperating association that assists the National Park Service, supports the education, preservation, development and interpretation of four National Park-managed historic sites throughout the Pacific, including Pearl Harbor.

A marine bugler on the USS West Virginia, Fiske witnessed the bombing of Pearl Harbor and the massive destruction that happened at the hands of Japanese fighter pilots.  For many years, his heart was filled with anger and hatred for the Japanese and his health suffered because of this.  Hospitalized due to the stress of his anger, he knew he had to forgive the Japanese for what they had done in the name of war or face imminent death due to his failing health.  In 1991, during the 5oth Anniversary Pearl Harbor Symposium, Japanese Fighter Pilot Zenji Abe offered an apology for the attack to members of the Pearl Harbor Survivors and extended his hand in friendship.  Fiske accepted his apology and the two became friends. As a symbol of peace and friendship, Abe gave Fiske $300 and asked him to lay two roses at the Arizona Memorial each month, one for him and one for Fiske.  He also asked Fiske to play the taps on his bugle after he did this.  Fiske honored this request every month until he passed away in 2004.

“Pearl Harbor Warriors: The Bugler, The Pilot, The Friendship” is a children’s book written by Pearl Harbor civilian survivor and author Dorinda Nicholson.  The book, which has won numerous national awards including the International Reading Association’s Children’s and Young Adult’s Book Award, is written as a correspondence between the author and her granddaughter, recounting the story of two World War II veterans—an American Marine and a Japanese pilot-—whose lives intersected in war at Pearl Harbor and again in reconciliation fifty years later.

Hakunani Anakalea, group leader at the A+ program at Holualoa Elementary School, reads “Pearl Harbor Warriors: The Bugler, The Pilot, The Friendship.”  Photo: Fern Gavelek Communications

Hakunani Anakalea, group leader at the A+ program at Holualoa Elementary School, reads “Pearl Harbor Warriors: The Bugler, The Pilot, The Friendship.” Photo: Fern Gavelek Communications

“It’s a very inspirational book and the second time I read it, I cried,” says Hakunani Anakalea, group leader at the A+ program at Holualoa Elementary School. “The book makes the emotions of the characters come alive and illustrates the importance of forgiveness.”

Fifth grade student Anuhea Kainoa-Cho shared that the book had a good story and added, “I learned about protecting others and why people should make up when they disagree.”

Hakunani Anakalea reads to the students

“Pearl Harbor Warriors: The Bugler, The Pilot, The Friendship,” can be purchased online at www.pacifichistoricparksbookstore.org, phone 1-888-485-1941. As part of its reading aloud program, the National Park Service has posted several other real life stories of Pearl Harbor survivors on their website for parents to read to their children.  Go to www.nps.gov/valr/forkids.

 Witness To History Videoconference Program

The National Park Service, with funding from Pacific Historic Parks, also offers a year round distance learning program for students and teachers from around the world.  Witness To History is a free program that utilizes videoconferencing technology to take students where visitors cannot go, bringing the sites and stories of Pearl Harbor to children and adults unable to visit Oahu.  The program includes a Pearl Harbor Survivor Series where participants can see and hear Pearl Harbor Survivors share their personal testimonies of what they experienced on that fateful day.  The Interpretive Ranger Series shows a video of a USS Arizona underwater dive while a National Park Ranger provides a voice-over interpretive lesson.  The program ends with a student and educator question and answer session.  For more information or to schedule a free Witness To History videoconference, contact 808-954-8744 or 808-4428.

 

Big Island Police Searching for 17-Year-Old Girl Missing Since September

UPDATE: Hawaiʻi County police have located 17-year old Mailekaleialoha Boe Hilo, who was reported missing. She was found unharmed in Hilo on August 16

Hawaiʻi County police are searching for a 17-year old Hilo girl reported as missing from Hilo since September 21.

Mailekaleialoha Boe

Mailekaleialoha Boe

Mailekaleialoha Boe is described as Hawaiian, 5-foot-3, 115 pounds with black shoulder-length hair and brown eyes.

Police ask that anyone with information on her whereabouts call the Police Department’s non-emergency line at 935-3311. Tipsters who prefer to remain anonymous may call Crime Stoppers at 961-8300 in Hilo or 329-8181 in Kona.

20th Annual Waimea Cherry Festival is Coming Up

The 20th Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival is Saturday, Feb. 2,  2013 and remembers its past with an anniversary exhibit, entertainment by some of the festival’s first performers and a commemoration of its founders.

Cherry Blossom Festival

Cherry Blossom Festival (photo provided by festival)

For two decades, the free community festival has showcased the 60-year-old cherry trees planted at Church Row Park and the Japanese tradition of viewing them—hanami. The event, held annually the first Saturday of February, includes a variety of activities 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at venues throughout Waimea—look for pink banners identifying site locations from the Parker Ranch Historic Homes on Mamalahoa Hwy. 190 to the Hawaiian Homestead Farmer’s Market on Hwy. 19.

Spend the day to experience an all-day lineup of Japanese and multi-cultural performing arts, plus hands-on demonstrations of bonsai, origami, traditional tea ceremony, fun mochi pounding and a host of colorful craft fairs. Enjoy free shuttle transportation among most venues. For info, 808-961-8706.

BJ Penn Taken to Hospital After Fight – Dana White Wants Him to Retire

Last night, Hilo’s own BJ Penn got beaten down at UFC on FOX to Rory McDonald.

BJ walks back to the locker room after last nights UFC on FOX fight. (Esther Lin, MMA Fighting)

BJ walks back to the locker room after last nights UFC on FOX fight. (Esther Lin, MMA Fighting)

According to MMAFighting he was taken to the hospital after the fight:

…The former two-division champion was routed by Rory MacDonald at UFC on FOX 5, a beating so physically taxing that Penn had to be transported to a Seattle area hospital for observation, according to UFC officials…

The article then goes on to say that UFC Promoter Dana White wants him to retire:

…Following the event, White said during a FUEL TV interview that he wanted and expected to see Penn hang up his gloves for good.

“He didn’t say it tonight but I think BJ is probably going to retire,” White said. “I wouldn’t mind seeing that…

I actually expected him to retire after his last fight and it seems like he’s really taken a beating in the last years of his career losing only winning 1 of his last 6 fights!

BJ Penn Record

Here are the results of a poll that I took back in August of 2010 asking whether BJ Penn should retire or not:

BJ Retire

 

 

Big Island Police Charge Escapee With Multiple Counts – Still Searching for Other Escapee

Big Island Police have charged Jarvis Higa today with several offenses stemming from his escape from the Hawaii Community Correctional Center.

Jarvis Naoki Higa

Jarvis Naoki Higa

Higa was charged with Escape in the 1st Degree, Kidnapping, Assault 2nd Degree, Robbery 2nd Degree, Criminal Property Damage in the 3rd Degree, and Unauthorized Control of a Propelled Vehicle. Higa is presently being held at the East Hawaii Detention Facility located at the Hilo Police Station. Higa will likely be arraigned on his charges on Monday, December 10th, at Hilo District Court.

Higa is being detained without bail.