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Casco’s Taekwondo students earn black belts

By Staff | Jun 14, 2018

Pictured after the tests are (from left): Mariana Ortiz, Ron Balagso, Kealii Magana, Teani Aipa, Maison Alexander, and Randy and Stacy Casco.

LAHAINA – For some 40 years now, Randy and Stacy Casco have guided the local affiliate of the United States Taekwondo Association (USTA) here in Lahaina.

That tradition of civic integrity and dedication to the promotion of an upstanding and responsible citizenry by Casco’s Taekwondo at the Lahaina Civic Center continued last month as three young students of the program achieved 1st Dan Black Belt ranking in an examination held there.

The grueling, hour-long testing was performed by three young teenagers – Kealii Magana, Teani Aipa and Maison Alexander, all 13-year-old students at Lahaina Intermediate School – before the examining board of Senior Master Randy Casco (8th Degree Black Belt), Stacy Casco (Third Degree), Ron Balagso (Second Degree) and Mariana Ortiz (First Degree).

All three teens have been practicing at Casco’s Taekwondo for six years.

The examination, before a crowded room of supporters that included family, friends and classmates, began with each student performing traditional TKD forms, followed by kicking and sparring techniques, self-defense routines and board breaking with kicks and hand techniques.

The perseverance and courage of all three examinees shone brightly throughout the testing, but became particularly evident when one of the students took over a dozen attempts to break a double-pine obstacle with a jumping kick. A roar of applause came from the crowd when the feat was accomplished.

At the conclusion of the testing, Magana, the son of Kehau and Loell Magana; Aipa, the daughter of Lisa and BJ Aipa; and Alexander, the son of Keri and Richard Alexander, all appeared to be exhausted but nonetheless elated with their accomplishment.

All were feted with lei, congratulatory embraces and a big piece of chocolate cake.

Congratulations to all three students and to Casco’s Taekwondo for its continuing promotion of the well-being of the Lahaina community and the integrity of our youth.