Community loses Pearl Yolanda Vierra
The everlasting strength of the West Side community is built around the angelic love of people like Pearl Yolanda Vierra. So, although she passed away last month, the kindness of her spirit will carry on endlessly as a testament to her and to her family.
Vierra grew up in Lahaina and graduated from Lahainaluna High School in 1974. She then worked various positions in the visitor industry before joining the staff at the Hyatt Regency Maui as a PBX operator in 2006.
She was hired by Security Director Kekoa Mowat, who relates a deep admiration for Pearl.
“Lahaina lost a living angel. I can’t think of the right words to describe how nice, how selfless, how caring she was. When I close my eyes and think of her, the word that comes to mind is aloha — not the aloha that is said, but the aloha that is given. She always cared for everyone around her and made sure everyone was comfortable before she was.
“She made you feel happy, and her laughter was infectious. She was always positive, and you knew it was genuine — it wasn’t a show. It was who Pearl was. She was truly amazing,” related Mowat last week.
Moreover, she was a loving and caring wife, mother, grandmother, aunty, cousin and friend. In this spirit, and as she battled through her own cancer, she was an avid participant and contributor in Relay for Life efforts here in Maui.
Her family describes her as a pillar of strength for her ever- present smile and her contagious laughter. She enjoyed traveling, gardening and spending quality time with her family, friends and her favorite cat, Felix.
Pearl is pre-deceased by her mother, Estrella Calma; father Fernandico Calma; and sisters Elaine Galang, Magdalena Anoba and Chris Fausta Torres. She will live on in the hearts of her husband, Akoni Vierra; sons Dane (Eliana) Calma, Tony (Karen) Vierra, Alvin Vierra and daughter Nani (Josh) Whitcher; sisters Isabella Lambayan, Gloria Perreira and Loretta “Lolly” (Clifford) Corniel; granddaughter Dayna-Leigh (Edward) Calma-Phillips; grandson Fernando Calma; as well as numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
A memorial service was held at Maria Lanakila Church on Thursday, March 4, followed by a burial ceremony at Maui Memorial Park. (By Walter Chihara)