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WHHA Phase 3 Dedicated, Blessed and Celebrated on Nov.10th PDF Print E-mail

Waimanalo Hawaiian Homes Association (WHHA) dedicated and blessed its final Phase 3 Building on Saturday, November 10, 2007 with over 200 community leaders, families and friends at its "Ka Ho'oilina na Kuhio Community Center" on Waimanalo Hawaiian Homestead land.

Waimanalo, O'ahu.  The culmination of WHHA's long-term strategic plan for a community center was realized with a dedication, blessing and celebration on Saturday, November 10, 2007.  With over 200 attendee's present, the solemn and traditionally Hawaiian ceremony was led by its Executive Board and membership under peaceful skies and weather.  A traditional himeni, "Ho'onani I Ka Makua Mau" was led by Aunty Mary Ann Crowell, WHHA historian with her fellow Waimanalo Senior Citizens members and accompanied by Mr. and Mrs. Leo and Kau'i Kama of Maluohai Residents Association.  Offering the pule wehe in olelo Hawaii was John Sang, Treasurer of WHHA.

Acknowledging our special guests and friends with her "flare of aloha!" was Aunty Moana Akana.  Representing the Office of the Governor and Department of Hawaiian Home Lands Chairman, Micah A. Kane was Ben Henderson, Deputy Chair, Rep. Tommy Water, representing Councilwoman Barbara Marshall's office, Ikaika Anderson along with other community leaders, Grace Adviento, Julie Dugans, Ku'ulei McLaughlin, Earl Kawa'a, Susan Wada, Sharon Majit-Gorian, Linda Chin, Rhonda Funn, David Goto, Jonathan Mook, Sandi Quildon, Art Mori, Maile Goo and David Mayeda.  Also, Shirley Swinney and Homeland Schaedahl, President and Vice President respectively from Maluohai Residents Association were present, and a telephone call of regret from the Princess Elizabeth Kahanu Estates homestead leadership was received with their congratulations and "Love and aloha!"

A very special Hawaiian presentation led by Kau'i Sang was the planting of an ulu sapling honoring her mother, Aunty Joe Ann "Ululani" Sang, former WHHA Treasurer and Community Center Committee Chairperson.  Led by Uncle Earl Kawa'a with a mele-oli and explanation to all present the process of the planting, its representation and the protocol.  With soft chanting and responses by everyone, the immediate family led by Kau'i Sang began to plant the ulu sapling handed by Uncle Tony with every child, niece, nephew, grandchild, in-laws scattering dirt and placing small stones to firmly secure the root ball.   Aunty Joe Ann passed away in May 2007.

Following the planting, the Sang and Kupahu 'ohana sang their family song.

A dedicatory speech was delivered by Paul P. Richards, WHHA President who recalled the years that had passed and the land upon which the building now sit were strewn with large shrubs, weeds, trees and littered with abandoned cars, trucks and a boat.  "Building the vision of the community center was easy, it was having everyone else to see the vision which was difficult..." he added, "...we (Aunty Joe Ann and Paul) would envision the community center.  He later recalled, on one occasion as we sat there, "looking towards the site of the phase 3 building, Aunty Joe Ann Sang said, "I can see the building" which he replied, "I can see it too!"  "Her spirit, love and aloha is everywhere in the building and especially in the kitchen which she took so much thought, care in its design, features and settings.  You can see and feel her presence when you enter and know her guidance is near."

With tearful eyes and a somber voice, the dedicatory speech left everyone silently remembering the strength of this special woman dedicated to her family and community.  Paul commented, "once we were talking and said where heaven touches this earth are our homes and this community center.  We built this community center with the help of many wonderful and inspired mena nd women so that we, Waimanalo Hawaiian Homes Association, its homestead residents and the whole community may progress, to learn, to educate and to grow.  As leaders, we do not aspire or want power or authority, but it provides us the opportunity to serve everyone."

In the closing remarks, Uncle Tony reminded everyone of the Associations accomplishments and to participate in upcoming and more exciting events.  Mr. Richards acknowledged everyones' involvement with the designing, planning, construction and with the celebration held today in coordinating the event.  Appreciation and thanks to all the families, their members and community for their patience and diligence in making this day a celebration to remember!

The pule ho'okuu was pronounced by Kahu Kaleo Patterson and lunch was immediately served, this time through the kitchen!  Everone had the chance to view and service themselves with kalua-pig and cabbage, chicken long rice, poke, uala, poi, rice, pineapple, chocolate or prune cake, fruit punch or lemon aide.

Celebrating with Music!

No celebration would be complete until we finish off with music and there was more than enough!  These included:

  • Waimanalo Hawaiian Civic Club
  • Waimanalo Senior Citizens Club
  • Ke Aloha Chorus led by Leila (Ho'opii) Moa featuring Tutu Ho'opii and his falsetto!
  • Harmony
  • Waimanalo Sunset Band

The celebration ended at 3:00 p.m. with everyone filled with food, pleasantly happy with music and looking positively towards the future! 

 

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