Wayne Joseph’s Blog

Running with the Big Dog

Canoe Paddling Icon inducted into Sports Hall of Fame

John Kekua, Jr.

John Clifford Kekua, Jr. inducted into Sports Hall of Fame

John Kekua, Jr. passed away on September 1, 2010 at the age of 62.

Kekua was an icon and great role model in the Hawaiian Outrigger Canoe Paddling Community for more than 30 years. 

According to his daughter, Joy Kekua, canoe paddling has been passed down from generation to generation with the Kekua family.

Kekua was always athletic, being a member of the Hilo High football team he also threw shot put for the Vikings.

But Kekua made his mark in the world of canoe paddling as he worked to reorganize the Kamehameha Canoe Club in 1975.  Totally dedicated to canoe paddling Kekua worked tirelessly to preserve and perpetuate the sport until his passing.

Over the past 30 years Kekua has held numerous positions such as president of the Kamehameha Canoe Club, head coach of the same club, president of Moku O Hawaii Racing Association, president of Hawaiian Canoe Racing……….the list goes on and on.

For his numerous contributions to Hawai’i Island’s canoe paddling community and for his unselfish years of service the Big Island Sports Hall of Fame has inducted him, along with six others.

The BISHF will have a ceremony at the Wall of Fame at the Prince Kuhio Mall on August 21 at 10 am.

“We will introduce the seven and display their photos to the wall,” Chairman Derek Shigematsu said.  “We are hoping past inductees and the general public will come out to support the newly inducted honorees.”

Following the Wall dedication the ceremony will move to a luncheon at the Nani Mau Gardens at noon were a formal ceremony will take place.

For those interested in attending the luncheon the cost is $20 for adults and $15 for children 12 and under.  Seating is limited.

Tickets may be purchased in advance by calling Ellsworth Fontes at 935-5519.

The late Jack Matsui was the founder of the Big Island Sports Hall of Fame.


July 29, 2011 Posted by | Running on the Big Island | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment