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Contest entries reflect the legacy of Ed Lindsey II

By Staff | Jul 15, 2010


LAHAINA — Over 50 West Side students entered the first annual Lahaina News Ka Ho‘olina i Kakau ‘ia Writing Contest.

Inspired by the life of Ed Lindsey II (1939-2009), the competition was open this past school year to students in two grade level divisions — grades 6-8 and 9-12.

“Ka Ho‘olina I Kakau ‘ia” in English, roughly translated, means written legacy or the legacy that was written.

Edwin “Uncle Ed” Lindsey II lived a life guided by the Hawaiian values he learned from his kupuna, like aloha, malama, lokahi, laulima, kuleana and kokua, to name a few.

Uncle Ed shared these attributes with all those he encountered by example. Each year, the Lahaina News will feature one of these qualities in a writing exercise honoring the legacy of the community leader.

“We are very happy with the entries we received in the first year of the contest. Students from Sacred Hearts and Lahainaluna High School sent in interesting and touching essays, artwork and poetry on the theme of aloha,” said Lahaina News Editor Mark Vieth.

The top student-author who earned the coveted Ed Lindsey Award is former Sacred Hearts eighth-grader Rachel Nguyen.

“I’m so shocked that I won,” Nguyen said.

Nguyen is enrolled as a ninth-grader at Seabury Hall this coming year. She had a first-hand experience with the island icon.

“What inspired me to write that essay was just the experience of being in Honokowai Valley and learning from Mr. Ed Lindsey. Just thinking of all that he has done for Maui, from restoration to volunteering and teaching, (and) he did it all without being asked to do it and from the kindness of his heart. So I think that his actions were aloha.”

Nguyen’s winning essay, “Restoring the Tangible and Intangible,” can be read on page 20.

Amanda Mayers, another Sacred Hearts student, was an overall winner, capturing the Lahaina News Most Creative prize with an entry that included a visual. Her interpretation of aloha will be published in next week’s paper.

First, second and third place writers are being recognized in each category with prizes from contributing local businesses. These entries will also be published in the Lahaina News over the remainder of the summer.

The winners in the grades six to eight category were all Sacred Hearts students. They are, in order from first to third place, Kaile Stockham, Teak McAfee and Alicia Huliganga.

The writers penning the top three entries in the level nine through 12 division were Lahainaluna High School students Stephanie Alamon, first place; Desiree Vasquez, second; and Joshua Asio, third.

Businesses and members of the community contributing prizes include Eden and Kevin McAfee, Kapalua Dive Company; Jerry Kunitomo, Lahaina Pizza Company; Mark Ellman, Mala Ocean Grill and Penne Pasta; Michael Moore, Tim Moore, Robert Aguiar, Old Lahaina Luau; Robin Ritchie; Jim and Randy Coon, Trilogy Excursions; and Kim Willis, Life Coach. 

Judges were members of the Lindsey family and extended ‘ohana, including Jonathan Lindsey, Lahela Constantino, Johnny Constantino, Lisa Agdeppa, Ekolu Lindsey and Uncle Ed’s wife, Puanani Lindsey.

“I was overwhelmed at the amount of entries we had. It was nice to see the participation of the students and living their feelings of aloha,” commented Ed’s son, Jonathan Lindsey.

Puanani Lindsey agreed: “I feel honored that we were a part of this program. I could hear how Ed inspired the keiki. It’s important for kids to broaden their literary compositional skills for their education, and this is a good start.”

Mrs. Lindsey, in particular, commended Mary Anna Waldrop from Sacred Hearts School “for inspiring her students to participate and express their mana‘o.”

Ed “Ekolu” Lindsey III helped organize the contest. He was pleased with the results

“This exercise is a testament to the legacy that my father has left. To read what some of our haumana (students) have written was amazing. I could really feel my father’s influence on them.

“I hope that each and every one of these kids can carry aloha and seed the nation/world as they move on through life. We have those that came before us to thank, so that the keiki after us can carry on. It is our generation’s responsibility to ensure that we remain pono in the things we do, so our children tomorrow can have a better world,” he remarked.

“With help from the Lindsey family and our generous community sponsors, Lahaina News will hold the contest again in the 2010-11 school year,” Vieth added.

Restoring the Tangible and Intangible


“What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world remains and is immortal.” ~ Albert Pine

Did you know that 7,627,819 people visit Hawaii each year? With so many visitors, Hawaii’s economy depends on tourism. “Aloha!” The word is heard when these visitors get off the plane, when they enter a store, mostly everywhere in Hawaii. It is such an iconic word that many people instantly think hello, goodbye, love or Hawaii. For people to purchase a product or service, businesses show their hospitality and welcome their consumers with a friendly and warm “Aloha.” Do they really mean it? Are they just doing their jobs? Do they really have aloha? Although aloha does means hello, goodbye or love, it also has a much deeper meaning.

In “Creating Anahola,” author Curby Hoikeamaka Rule wrote, “Aloha is the joyful sharing of life energy in the present.” Ancient Hawaiians welcomed guests by touching their foreheads and sharing their breath. This custom was practiced because breath symbolized life and spirit. Aloha is also a way of life and the positive energy that life possesses. How life is taken and the actions taken define each person’s spirit.

I believe that aloha has begun to disappear. The word is often misused or said without the true feelings that a person should hold when saying it. One man who I recently met possessed the true meaning of aloha. Truly and entirely, this man’s life was, and still is, aloha. Mr. Ed Lindsey is one person who brought aloha to life. He and his wife, Puanani, children and friends have worked immensely and intensely to restore Honokowai Valley. He was dedicated to restoring Honokowai Valley and sharing and passing on his vast knowledge of the Hawaiian culture to future generations — to my generation.    

Without a doubt, I think that every virtue of moral excellence applies to Mr. Ed Lindsey. During a class field trip to Honokowai Valley, Mr. Lindsey didn’t automatically lecture us; instead he let us explore the valley first. We then went to Mr. Lindsey if we had any questions, but when he answered our questions, he did it in such a way that it made us reflect, as if his answer had further questions. We learned more of the Hawaiian culture and values, such as malama (to care and protect the land), lokomaika‘i (generosity), and hookuleana (to take responsibility).

Mr. Lindsey’s life and spirit were filled with aloha every day, when he taught strangers something new as they worked in the valley. He has left behind an inspiring legacy through his life. I am thankful that I was able to meet Mr. Ed Lindsey. I hope that God takes care of him in heaven, and his Spirit of Aloha watches over all of us and continues to inspire us to live the ways of Aloha.