WALTER I.M. KAU

Posted On January 5th, 2011 -

WALTER I. M. KAU

90, died in Hawaii Medical Center East on 20 December 2010. At his bedside were his only son, Philip, his daughter-in-law, Claire, and granddaughter, Megan. Walter, born in Honolulu, lived a long and happy life. His experience with the piano started at the age of nine and culminated some 81 years later. Walter debuted his musical gift at an organ recital held at St. Andrews Cathedral as a teenager. After graduating from McKinley High School, he married his wife, Esther, who predeceased his death by 11 years.

Walter served in the U.S. Navy around the time of World War II. And eventually was afforded the opportunity to attend one of the most prestigious music schools in the country at the University of Rochester’s Eastman School of Music where he obtained his B.A. in music. He developed a large piano studio with a multitude of assistant instructors working under his tutelege. His devotion to the church never ceased as
He was the organist for St. Clement’s Church for over 50 years.

Walter’s Organ House was the exclusive distributor of the Allen Organ. His teaching of piano and organ has spanned some three generations. He was passionate about cooking, mahjong and became a respected master bridge player. He also developed an expertise and art in cultivating narcissus bulbs that bloomed incredible flowers which he proudly shared with both family and friends. Perhaps his greatest legacy, along with his music, is mentoring via positive thinking, kindness and compassion for others. He was also an avid ballroom dancer and instructor. After retirement from St. Clement’s, he traveled extensively and enjoyed entertaining on the keyboard and plying his dancing skills.

Walter is survived by his son, W. Philip (Claire K.) Kau, his sister, Bernice Kau, and brother, Robert “Bobby” Kau. He was fortunate to have twin granddaughters, Megan K. Kau and Kristen S. Kau who resides in Wisconsin.

Visitation from 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, January 8, 2011 at St. Elizabeth’s Episcopal Church service at 11 a.m. Burial at 12 noon at Oahu Cemetery. Flowers to be omitted. Casual attire.


- Denotes U.S. Military Veteran