Stories from the Blue: Kimokeo Kapahulehua

March. 2016

"Call nā po‘e ka lani, nā po‘e moana, nā po‘e ka hōnua -- the people of the heavens, the people of the ocean, and the people of the land, we're all just one big family in how we work together in preserving everything," says Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary volunteer Kimokeo Kapahulehua. Watch our video to hear Kimokeo's story from the blue.

Transcript

Get in, okay, ho‘omākauka.

So we're all connected to the canoe because our ancestors came from the south islands or Polynesian islands called Tahiti or Marquesas by canoe.

So significant are canoe, that's the way of our transportation being here and is how we had landed on these islands.

We very very connected to the canoe and connected to ocean because of that reason.

We call it "he moku ka wa‘a ka wa‘a he moku."

There's an island in the canoe and there's a canoe in the island.

And makes it very simple of sustainability and it's almost a way where our home and life coming over the ocean.

This is Myla, Myla is three years old and one of the reasons for kupuna like myself to have a three year old they call it today early childhood learning.

Yesterday was just a living culture for us to care for the youngers and making sure that they hear our chants, they see our motions and feel the ‘uhane or the spirit within our culture.

SINGING: I ka moana ka moana hōhonu Pi‘i I ka lewa ka lewa nu‘u I ka hikina hae [honi honi] a ka lā.

The young girls always want to love the kupuna.

Say 'bye', Myla, aloha, a hui hou.

It's really important that the people of Hawai‘i preserve the Hawaiian culture so we can embrace the world of who we are, what we are, what we have done, and where we're going with Hawaiian culture.

I know a lot of culture that is extinct now and a lot of culture don't exist and so for me living my culture, practicing and teaching every day, will keep my cultural in legacy. ".. three miles away from the ocean from here."

NOAA is a very articulate department that goes out and extends that how to care for nature and how to care for culture.

So I was the volunteer of the year in 2005 for the national marine sanctuary.

Call nā po‘e ka lani, nā po‘e moana, nā po‘e ka hōnua.

The people of the heavens, the people of the ocean, and the people of the land, we're just one big family in how we work together in preserving everything.

Ok guys, let's get the canoe in the water.

It makes me feel great that people recognize the work that we do and I credit that work, not for myself, but for everybody in the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale Sanctuary here on Maui because it takes a team to do the kindof work I do, versus just myself.