Help LACA save on printing and postage!

Help LACA save on the cost of printing and postage by becoming an e-Newsletter Subscriber!

As an e-Newsletter Subscriber, you will receive a notice by email to let you know when the newsletter has been uploaded to the website. You will be able to download and print your own copy of the newsletter — or save a tree and view it online. You’ll also find exclusive web-only articles and photos on the Lanai Connection blog.

When you become an e-Newsletter Subscriber, you are opting out of receiving the hardcopy newsletter via postal mail.

To become an e-Newsletter Subscriber, fill out the short form on our Subscribe page.

LACA Hawaii Block/Camp Holiday Bash!

Date: Saturday, December 5, 2009
Place: 1064 Sand Island Parkway
(See bottom of this article for map/driving directions)
Time: 9:30 AM – 4:00 PM


In the spirit of ohana, let’s get together and recapture Lana’i camp life! Fellowship with former neighbors from Stable Camp, Federation Camp, Kaumalapau Harbor Camp, the Ranch, blocks 30, 35, 22,17, etc. Block/Camp Tent sites. Set up time: Saturday, Dec. 5, 7:00 a.m. Please provide your own tent/chairs for neighborhood hangout. (optional) *Set up a Mom/Pop Store in your tent. Good time to sell holiday crafts. Donated desserts and snacks will be gratefully accepted and will go on sale under Taste of Lana’i. Patronize the concession stand for lunch.

*In lieu of a vendor’s assessment, a voluntary donation made payable to Kula Sand, LLC, affiliate of the Lanai Alumni and Community Association, will be appreciated.

To adequately prepare for the gathering, please download and send in the completed sign-up form. Direct inquiries to Rosita Hueu, Event Coordinator at rvhueu [at] aol [dot] com. Lana’i Contact Persons are Butch Gima, Susana Kincaid, Linda Degamo. Emcee will be Nelson Tamashiro, telling stories will be Kepa Maly, Herbert Watanabe, and hopefully others. We welcome your suggestions. Program timeline/activities subject to change without notice as we are still formulating plans.

Preliminary plans include:
Musical entertainment: John Kauwenaole, A’A Mele
Ethnic dances: Hawaiian, Filipino, Japanese
Martial arts demonstration: Escrima by Robert Garcia’s students
Giving recognition to Lana’i Living Treasures
Lanaians who have impacted the community; are exemplary role models
Lanaians from various sectors: business, educational, civic, cultural, medical, military, etc. who have made significant contributions to society
Recognizing old time and current retailers (or their business representatives/ohana)

Please bear in mind the time constraints so introductions will be brief. Person being recognized has to be present at the event.

Many thanks to Editor Alberta de Jetley of Lanai Today and Editor Joana Varawa of Lana’i Times Community Email for publicizing the forthcoming event. Since their publications, there have been revisions to: time, $10 for lunch is eliminated, send sign up form to postal address.


Driving Directions:

  • From N. Nimitz Highway, get onto Sand Island Access Road
  • Sand Island Access Road becomes Sand Island Parkway
  • Pass Makepono Street and Ulupono Street
  • 1064 Sand Island Parkway will be on your Right
  • If you get to the Sand Island State Park, you have gone too far.

New Directors, Profiles online!

Read about LACA’s newest directors: Rosalinda Degamo and Susana Reyes Sanchez. Their profiles have been included on the Leadership page, but also reprinted here for your convenience.

Rosalinda P. Degamo
Class of 1954

Rosalinda Pascua Degamo was born on August 27, 1936, in Hawi (Big Island).  At the age of six she left the Big Island and moved to the island of Maui to live under the guardianship of her eldest sister, Carolina “Helen” (Calixto) Sonido in the small sugar plantation town of Pu’ukoli’i.  At age 11 she then moved to the island of Lana’i where she entered the 6th grade in Lana’i High & Elementary School (LHES) until she graduated in 1954.

In 1956 she married Victor D. Degamo and had four children, Victor Jr. (1957), Juan (1960), Helinda (1963) and Calvin (1965).  All of whom are LHES alumni.  Through the 1970’s while raising her four young children through their formative and school years, she worked for Dole Company as a supervisor during the summer seasons and worked for the State of Hawai’i Department of Education’s TESL (Teaching English as a Second Language) Program during the school year.  However, when the TESL program had ended and discontinued, she took a position as a Teacher’s Aide and continued working for Dole in the summers and eventually became a regular supervisor until the pineapple industry of Lana’i phased out in the late 1980’s and ultimately retired in 1998 at age 62.

In the 1980’s she was the Lana’i Alumni Association contact person with the late Tommy Nunotani as president. Through collaborative planning with alumni on neighbor islands, Linda had a vital role in planning for the Lana’i High and Elementary School 50th Anniversary Celebration. In 1995, LACA evolved from the Lana’i Alumni Association. This year, she is one of the incoming LACA directors.

Currently, she is an active “kupuna” member in the Lana’i MEO (Maui Economic Opportunity) Program.  In the program she enjoys playing the ukulele and dancing the hula where it has given her many opportunities to travel and entertain Senior and public events on Maui as well as locally on Lana’i with Hula Halau O Lana’i Ka’ula.  In her spare time she enjoys cooking and baking and volunteering her time to help and aide her fellow senior cohorts at Hale Kupuna O Lana’i.

Susana Reyes Sanchez
Class of 1950

Susana graduated from Lana’i High School in 1950.  The following year she got married in Honolulu to Max Kincaid, USN.  Their three children are: Max Kincaid, Jr., Ramona Kincaid-Powell and Marina Longfellow.
The family moved to California in 1957 and lived in San Diego and later in Bakersfield. Sue was active in the PTA and was the elementary school photographer.  In 1961 the family returned to Hawaii.  When her daughters Ramona and Marina were in scouting, she volunteered for three years as a Brownie Leader.

After being discharged from the Navy, employment opportunity beckoned and the family moved to Midway for two years and to Subic Bay in the Philippines for seven years. Max Jr., went back to Lana’i after six months and attended Lana’i High School.  When he graduated his parents and sisters attended the commencement ceremony.  Ramona and Marina both graduated from George Dewey High School in Subic Bay.

In 1975 the Kincaid family returned to live in Honolulu. Four years later, Sue’s husband, Max, passed away. Sue attended Displaced Homemaker’s Class and learned how to cope with her loss and deal with living after losing her life partner.

Sue worked for the Coast Guard Exchange from 1981 to 1995 and got very proficient at liquor sales and in time managed the liquor department.  She enjoyed assisting customers in estimating how much beer and liquor they needed for their functions or events.  Of course, they never listened and always over bought and the overage was always brought back to the store.  After 14 years at the Exchange she retired.

Sue is a member of the Lana’i Alumni and Community Association. She is one of the incoming directors and serves on the membership committee. During Tina Mendes’ administration she was the Vice President.  Meetings were held at Farrington High School.

She attended the first LACA event in Las Vegas in 1996 with her brothers and their wives. Through the years, at the annual reunion held either at the California Hotel or Fremont Hotel, she was an essential volunteer for various tasks: being in charge of the hospitality suite, registration (checking off names and issuing name tags).
This has become an opportunity for the Sanchez family to host their own mini reunions. She lost two brothers within two years, Adolfo and Bonjoe. The surviving siblings and their families still attend the LACA Las Vegas events as they have done since the very beginning. They continue to enjoy connecting with all the Lanaians in attendance, having fun and sharing memories. So far, they haven’t missed a LACA Las Vegas Connection Reunion. Sue would like LACA members to realize that “buying a ticket does not insure a good time. It is up to us to make it fun.”

Sue has returned to her roots and is once again a Lana’i resident.  She derives much pleasure in actively participating in the senior programs.

Alumni News: Profile of John Keola Kauwenaole

Alumni News

Profile of John Keola Kauwenaole
Class of 1968

After 33 years with the Honolulu Police Department, John Kauwenaole retired in December 2008.  As a graduate of the LHES class of 1968, John left Lana’i to attend college in California and later at Church College of Hawaii aka Brigham Young University in Laie and majored in Police Science.

Since 1975, his service covered areas in East Honolulu, Pearl City, Waianae and Wahiawa.  He worked in details like in Juvenile Prevention as a DARE Instructor and Traffic Enforcement as a Motorcycle Officer.  In 1997 he was promoted to the rank of sergeant.  The following year, he was assigned as the first Weed and Seed Supervisor in the state.  Weed and Seed is a crime fighting strategy that deals with gang and drug activities in targeted locations.  He helped communities rebuild by bringing into those areas service providers, city and state assistance agencies.
He worked tirelessly to decrease crimes in the public housing complexes in the Kalihi area.  To combat drug dealing in Kalihi, he collaborated with the FBI, DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency), U.S. Marshalls, U.S. Attorney General, State Probation and parole officials.

It’s no wonder he was nominated for the Sergeant of the Year and won the overall Officer of the Year award in 1999!  As a retiree, he continues making an impact in Kalihi as a Reserve Police Officer.

John and his wife Roberta have been married for 37 years.  They are the parents of a son, a daughter, and enjoy their four grandchildren. His passion is playing music, going hunting and diving. His mom, Josephine Kauwenaole, better known as Aunty Pine resides at the Lana’i Community Hospital.

Best wishes for a well deserved and happy retirement, John!

2009 Annual Membership Social

Heartfelt gratitude to those who gave of their time and assistance on May 16, 2009 at Pearl Country Club.  We couldn’t have done it without your support!

  • *Joan Yamanaka, printed/collated program
  • *Raffles: Roberta Hueu (Centerpieces) Bunda, Kisha Carlos, Ruth Viduya Jimenez
  • Donors: raffles, plants, crafts, desserts
  • *Video: Dereck Jimenez
  • *Rendition of “God Bless America: Jade Stice

* denotes non-members

  • Sign-In: Marge Asato, Nickie Oshiro
  • Name Tags: Valentine Tanodra
  • Desserts: Suzanne Damian
  • Invocation: Ronald Fuchigami, Former Bishop, First Ward in Pearl City
  • Hospitality: Eleanor Ozoa, Rufina Kula
  • Lei Maker: Ruth Nakasone
  • Musicians: John Kauwenaole & Silva
  • Class of ’56 Tribute to 15 Lana’i Fallen Heroes: Lucy Tabbal, speaker
  • Surprise Heroic Deeds Tributes, “This Is Your Life”:
    – Emidgio Jamero reading commendation for Robert Viduya, retired Colonel;
    – Rosita Hueu reading commendation for Richard Oshiro, 442nd Infantry  Regiment
    – Nickie Oshiro acknowledging Sammy Young for the LACA Armed Forces  Tribute held at the State Capitol, September 12, 2002, to honor the Fallen Heroes.
  • Lanai High and Elementary School Update by Pierce Myers, principal
  • Distinguished LACA Member Award presented to Pierce Myers by Bill Ruidas
  • Recognition of ukulele craftsman, Pedro Dugay by Apolonia Stice
  • Recognition to LACA Benefactor, Robert Kinoshita by Rosita Hueu
  • Pearl Country Club: Michael Tao and catering staff

LACA Concerns

The transitional administrative process envisioned to be effective as of May 31, 2009 did not materialize.  With no one to fill the position vacated by outgoing president Rosita Viduya Hueu, the board approved the implementation of the following administrative roles and schedule as of July 1, 2009.  President Hueu installed the incoming officers and director on June 10:

2009 Co-President Pro Tem:  Monica Cockett, Jean Piena
2009-’11: President Elect/Recording Secretary: Coochie Cayan
2009-’11:  1st. Vice Pres./Treasurer: Donna Reyes Ching
2009-’12:  Director Bruno Oroyan. Unable to be present at the installation were the Lana’i Director Susana Sanches Kincaid and Linda Pascua Degamo.
Rosita Hueu will serve as Advisor.
Incumbent directors: Suzanne Damian, Michael Del Rosario, Bill Ruidas (Maui)
Coordinators: Jacob Hueu, Pierce Myers, Nickie Morita Oshiro
Webmaster: Donna Shiroma Nakasue
2010: Meeting Facilitators will be Suzanne Damian, February 10; Bruno Oroyan, March 10
2010 April 24:  Annual Membership Social (Day function)
2010 May 12:  Board Meeting, 1064 Sand Island Parkway
2010 June 1:  New fiscal year begins

After the demise of our founder the late Thomas Nunotani in 1995, LACA has existed for 14 years and rendered annual scholarships, awards/grants and bonded through fellowship events.  The future of the association rests with you.  Needed for next year will be new directors and prospective officers.  Food for thought: Volunteer as a class or as a group of compatible friends and assume carrying out the worthwhile activities.  Contact any board member if interested, in offering suggestions or nominating someone.

Due to the economic recession, dwindling donations from LACA members compelled the reduction of financial assistance to Lana’i High and Elementary School and in publishing two issues instead of three of The Lana’i Connection. Cutback was made to the Thomas Roy Nunotani Scholarship from $2,000 to $1,000.  Unavailable for this school year are funds for the $300 Minami Student Award for School or Community Service, $500 for Professional Improvement, and $1,500 LACA Vocational Scholarship.  Available will be the $1,000 Suzanne Pascua Damian Vocational Scholarship.

Members are encouraged to sign up as E-subscribers and go online to decrease mailing costs of the newsletters.  Articles and photos not covered in the hardcopy will be posted online.

Your participation is vital and crucial in sustaining LACA.  Please kokua and become a board member!

LACA Las Vegas Connection

Co-Chairs Monica Cockett and Suzanne Damian have planned an evening of good fun and fellowship for September 5, 2009.  Gathering place will be at the California Hotel/Casino in the Ohana Banquet Room from 6:00 PM – 10:00 PM.


  • The invoice is paid in advance and adhered to is the No Refunds rule to “No Shows.”
  • Saturday, Dec. 5, 8:00 AM-10:00 AM, Early Sign In, Maile Room
  • Contact Persons, attendees without a group:  pick up name tags
  • 6:00 PM, Ohana Banquet Room
  • Please provide centerpiece for your table.
  • In the spirit of aloha, wear a lei.

Club Categories

A heartful mahalo for your generosity and concern to our Alma Mater and to LACA.  Donations are cumulatively recorded and members are elibigle for contributory memberships in the various Clubs. Regrettably, due to the economic crisis and rising postal costs, we will temporarily suspend mailing Club certificates. Your understanding will be appreciated.

Contributor Club – up to $99
Sharen Hashimoto

Century Pineapple Club – $100 up
Anonymous Donor
William S. Olsen
Ruth Cockett Stormo
Donna Tanodra Willingham
Yasuko & Kathleen Duhaylongsod

Golden Pineapple Club – $500 up
Karen Nobui Katagiri
Posthumous: Chuck Shimizu

Lana’i Hale Club – $1,000 up
George T. Higa was presented his certificate at the Annual Membership Social

Our Latest Contributors

Since April 2008, we would like to thank the following for their generous donations:

Coochie Cayan, Donna Ching, Monica Cockett, Suzanne Damian, Lloyd Funada, Rosita & Jacob Hueu, Betty Itakura, Ruth Nakasone, Bruno Oroyan, Jean Piena, Joyce Saki