Community loses Mike Casicas
He is man that manifested the strength of the West Side community and the integrity of personal commitment to the welfare of family and the general population.
Charles Michael Casicas passed peacefully away on Feb. 19, 2021, but will be fondly remembered for the love he gave to all around him as well as the dedication of his life in service to family, community and country. He represented the strength of Lahaina and the altruism of life as one of Maui’s finest.
Growing up in Lahaina and attending Sacred Hearts School and Lahainaluna High School, he served in the United States Marine Corps. Upon returning home to the Valley Isle, he served as a Maui County Police Officer for some 20 years. Uncle Mike continued in employment service in security at various resorts in Kaanapali.
Along the way, Casicas spearheaded notable community projects, including Project Graduation and MPD’s D.A.R.E. programs, illuminating his constant care for the keiki of our community. In particular, his leadership in promoting the graduation night festivities for Lahainaluna seniors revived the then-fading program that celebrates — in a safe and supervised celebration –this most special night for high schoolers.
One of those deeply affected by Mike Casicas’ generosity and care for the youth of Lahaina is Karen (Ancheta) Pruit, Lahainaluna Class of ’97.
“I am saddened in Uncle Mike’s passing, but will always remember the great encouragement from him as a student at Lahainaluna. Lifelong lessons were learned, and he was instrumental in teaching me about service to others and to the community,” she explained.
“He emphasized ‘it takes a village to raise a child.’ Uncle Mike and his family — Audrey, Mikey and Aunty Lorene (Akiona) — were always welcoming in their home, a safe place, like a clubhouse for teens. They had a positive influence on me, especially as a teenager — a pivotal time when making smart decisions mattered and determined the trajectory of my life and career aspirations,” said Pruit.
“I became involved in Project Graduation and several other community activities while at Lahainaluna. I would look forward to weekends of serving and being a part of the community service groups that Uncle Mike and Aunty Lorene coordinated. They made serving fun, and learning the life lessons that they taught me has left lasting impressions on my heart. As I write this, I am re-inspired to serve my family, church and community in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. Mikey Boy and Audrey, carry on the legacy of your parents and continue to be Maui’s finest.”
Charles Michael Casicas is survived by his wife, Rose Martinez; son Michael; daughter Audrey; mother Betty Rodrigues (Albert); stepmother Opal Casicas; sisters Beverly Estrella (Bobby) and Laurie Amidon (Bill); nieces and nephews Bobby Jr. (Kristen), Chelby (Tyler), Jimmy (Jackie), Ian (Nicole), Caiti (Daelin) and Alex (Spence); and grandnieces and nephews Tysyn, Joseph, Dyllen, Brynn, Tycha, Atlas and Lopaka.
He is pre-deceased by his father, Laurencio “Larry” Casicas.
A funeral service was held at Maria Lanakila Church, and Charles Michael Casicas was laid to eternal rest at the Maui Veterans Cemetery in Makawao. Aloha ‘oe. (By Walter Chihara)