Lānaʻi: Reflecting on the Past; Bracing for the Future

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    Back Matter
    (Center for Oral History, Social Science Research Institute, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, 2014)
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    Interview with Jane Sakamura Nakamura
    (Center for Oral History, Social Science Research Institute, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, 2014) Nakamura, Jane Sakamura, 1933- ; Nishimoto, Warren ; Kodama-Nishimoto, Michiko
    Jane Toshie Sakamura Nakamura was born in 1933 in Honokaʻa, Hawaiʻi Island. Her father was Masaru Sakamura, a carpenter for Honokaʻa Sugar Company; her mother was Hatsuko Matsuura Sakamura, originally from Paʻauilo. In 1937, before Jane Nakamuraʼs fourth birthday, the family moved to Lānaʻi City, where Masaru and other Big Island carpenters began working for the Hawaiian Pineapple Company, building homes and other structures. Hatsuko found employment as a clerk at Yet Lung Store, and later at Mermart Store, Okamoto Store, and finally, Richard’s Shopping Center. As the eldest of six children, Jane Nakamura had many childcare responsibilities as both her parents held fulltime jobs. She attended Lānaʻi High and Elementary School, graduating in 1951. An excellent student, she was the first recipient the company’s Dole Scholarship. She used it to pursue a degree in teaching from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. She spent a year attending Bucknell University in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania, where she also practice-taught. At Bucknell, she was exposed to the larger world and was asked to give talks about Hawaiʻi to various groups in Pennsylvania. She returned to UH-Mānoa and earned her fifth-year teaching certificate in 1956. After practice-teaching at University Laboratory School, she briefly returned home and taught kindergarten for one semester at Lānaʻi High and Elementary School. Dissatisfied with kindergarten teaching, she returned to Oʻahu and taught at the following elementary schools: Helemano, Nimitz, Lanakila, Pearl City Highlands, and Waimalu. She retired in 1990. She married Takeshi Nakamura in 1957. A longtime airline industry employee, Takeshi died in 2000. A devout Christian who teaches Bible classes, Jane Nakamura lives in ʻAiea, Oʻahu.
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    Interview with Matsuko Kaya Matsumoto
    (Center for Oral History, Social Science Research Institute, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, 2014) Matsumoto, Matsuko Kaya, 1928- ; Nishimoto, Warren ; Kodama-Nishimoto, Michiko
    Matsuko Matsumoto, second of four children, was born in 1928 in Kapaʻa, Kauaʻi. Her parents, Teiichi and Kimiyo Kaya, were immigrants from Japan. At the time of her birth, her father was a Makee Sugar Company field worker. Preferring to work in pineapple rather than sugar, Teiichi Kaya moved his family to Lānaʻi where he operated a mule-drawn plow, picked pineapple, and did hō hana. Kimiyo Kaya tended to the family and took in laundry from bachelor workers. In later years, due to poor health, Teiichi Kaya became an office custodian. Matsuko Matsumoto, a graduate of Lānaʻi High and Elementary School, began full-time work in 1946 as a storeroom clerk for Hawaiian Pineapple Company. In later years, she labored in the pineapple fields. In 1962, she began supervising youths who signed on for summer work. By the early 1970s, she was promoted to become the first female field superintendent. She retired in 1985. She and Yukio Matsumoto, a Hawaiian Pineapple Company carpenter who helped build many of the homes which still stand in Lānaʻi City, raised two sons, Colbert and Kurt. Matsuko Matsumoto, widowed in 2001, still maintains a home on Lānaʻi. A grandmother of four, she enjoys visiting her grandchildren on Oʻahu and Kauaʻi.
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    Interview with Hideko Kurashige Saruwatari
    (Center for Oral History, Social Science Research Institute, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, 2014) Saruwatari, Hideko Kurashige, 1927- ; Nishimoto, Warren
    Hideko Saruwatari was born in 1927 in Lānaʻi City, Lānaʻi. She is one of six children born to Aiko and Iwao Kurashige. Both parents were employed by Hawaiian Pineapple Company. Her mother held various jobs: bi-lingual assistant in the household of engineer, David Root; dormitory cleaner and laundress for Hawaiian Pineapple Company employees; and helper in the company bakery and hotel. Her father, initially hired as a heavy equipment operator, helped clear Pālāwai Basin for pineapple cultivation. In later years, he was a movie theater projectionist and a storeroom clerk. Hideko Saruwatari attended Lānaʻi High and Elementary School. While still in school, she worked part-time in the company storeroom. In the summer, she worked in the field, cutting the tops of pineapples. During World War II, she helped her mother at Endo’s Fountain. In 1948, she married Masao Saruwatari, who also worked in the storeroom. In the 1960s, she did bookkeeping for the Nishimura Service Station. For more than thirty years, she worked as a clerk in the Licensing Office, Maui County. The Saruwataris raised four children.
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    Interview with Albert Halape Morita
    (Center for Oral History, Social Science Research Institute, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, 2014) Morita, Albert Halape, 1950- ; Nishimoto, Warren
    Albert Halape Morita, one of eight children, was born in 1950 in Hoʻolehua, Molokaʻi, to Richard and Anita Morita. At the time of Albert’s birth, his father was a police officer on Molokaʻi. About a year later, the family moved to Lānaʻi where Richard Morita secured the position of fish and game warden – a position he held for twenty-five years. The Moritas resided in Kōʻele, former headquarters of Lānaʻi Ranch. Their neighbors were the Richardsons, the Kwons, the Sakamotos, and the McGuires. As a youth, Albert Morita hiked, camped, fished, hunted, and participated in horse-related activities. A 1968 graduate of Lānaʻi High and Elementary School, he majored in animal technology at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Returning to Lānaʻi in 1972, he was employed by the Kōʻele Company in nursery and beach park maintenance at Maunalei and Hulopoʻe. Following his father’s retirement as Lānaʻi’s sole fish and game warden, Albert Morita was hired as one of two conservation officers by the State of Hawaiʻi. Retired since 2007, he still resides on Lānaʻi. He is an active volunteer with the Lānaʻi Culture and Heritage Center.