• Tuesday, December 18, 2018
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"Auntie" Edith Kawelohea McKinzie
Ua ha'alele mai i keia ola ana 'O Kawelohea, ua hala i ke ala ho'i 'ole mai October 22, 1925 to October 21, 2014 "Aunty" Edith Kawelohea McKinzie has departed this life [to rejoin her ancestors] and has embarked upon her journey on the path of no return. Edith Kawelohea McKinzie passed away on Tuesday, October 21, 2014, four and a half hours shy of her 89th birthday. "Aunty" Edith lived a full and happy life, and as one of Hawaii's foremost authorities on Hawaiian culture she will be fondly remembered by many whose lives she touched through her love for hula, her encouragement to learn Hawaiian, and her passion for genealogy. Aunty Edith lived a remarkable life, indeed and We, her family, friends, students and colleagues, are most fortunate to have had the pleasure and opportunity of sharing wonderful moments with this truly kind and gentle Hawaiian soul. Edith Kawelohea Kapule McKinzie was born on October 22,1925 in Honolulu to a pure Hawaiian father, Harry Kawelo Kapule of Holualoa, on the island of Hawaii and a Portuguese mother, Caroline "Carrie" Costa of Pauoa, O'ahu. Aunty Edith was born hiapo, the eldest of her siblings, a sister Alexandrina "Sandy" Kapule (Kanekoa, Kalanui) and a brother Harry Kawelo Kapule Jr. On December 20, 1946 Aunty Edith married Clayton Mckinzie of St. Louis, Missouri, and from that union she had one child, a daughter, Joleen Hokuloa McKinzie, who later married Arthur Chavez of New Mexico. Aunty Edith has two granddaughter's: Heather Kahealani (Luna) Chaloupek and Lisa Noelani (Padilla) Chavez, and six great-grandchildren: Nolan Kalanikeleikekai Luna, Tyler Keahi Makoa Luna, Isaac Javier "Pono" Padilla, Kira Lehuanani Chaloupek, Genevieve Kawelohea Padilla, Chase Koanui Chaloupek. Aunty Edith also has four step-children from Clayton: Kenneth, Maydean, Michael and Matta-Sue Mokihana McKinzie and an extended ohana that include two nieces, a nephew, and several cousins. Aunty Edith grew up in a traditional Hawaiian-speaking family that included her father's siblings. Her family was musically inclined and with her aunts, uncles, and cousins, she was immersed in Hawaiian values full of Love and shared Aloha. After her father's passing, Aunty Edith was raised as the hanai of her father's youngest sister, Lucy Keahi Kapule and her husband, Reuben Gooman, both of whom she fondly acknowledged with great affection. Aunty Edith's love for hula began at a very young age when she was encouraged to take up hula by her Aunt Mary Kapule, a dancer for hula master Antone Kao'o. She began her formal hula training at the age of twelve with renowned hula master Joseph Ilala'ole. Amongst Aunty Edith's distinguished hula teachers was Eleanor Hiram Hoke, a student of hula masters Keaka Kanahele and Katie Nakaula. Eleanor Hiram was one of the few remaining teachers trained in the chants and dances associated with the hula pahu. Aunty Edith studied under Eleanor Hiram Hoke for eight years, dancing professionally in tableaus and learning the drumming techniques and steps unique to the hula pahu and upon completion of her training went through the "process of an 'uniki" with Eleanor Hiram Hoke and Katie Nakaula. Aunty Edith later studied with Edith Kanaka'ole, Pele Puku'i Suganuma, Kalena Silva and Hoakalei Kama'u. Aunty Edith taught hula throughout Hawaii, US Mainland, Midway Island, Guam, and Alaska, and served as a Judge for numerous hula competitions such as the Merrie Monarch Hula Festival, King Kamehameha Day Hula and Chant Competition, Queen Lili'uokalani Keiki Hula Competition, Hawaii Secondary Schools Hula Kahiko Competition (Malia Craver Hula Kahiko Competition), World Invitational Hula Festival and other hula venues in Japan and on the US Mainland. Her love for dance extended to other forms as well; she studied ballet at Kulamanu Dance School in Kahala, Oahu and received additional training in modern dance, jazz, tap, and folk dance. Following Dance Educator's Teacher Training School in New York, Aunty Edith opened a dance school on Guam where she was invited by the famous dance ethnologist La Meri and noted pioneer of modern dance Ted Shawn to teach Hawaiian dance at Jacob's Pillow in Lee, Massachusetts. Aunty Edith completed her BA degree in Hawaiian Studies, MA in Education and P.D. in Secondary Education from the University of Hawaii, and was one of the first Hawaiian Studies Professor with Honolulu Community College where she taught for 19 years. She also served as a lecturer throughout the State of Hawaii on Hawaiian chants, hula, genealogy, notable persons, place names and legal Hawaiian translations. Aunty Edith credits Professor Rubellite Kawena Johnson for her encouragement and for opening doors in the field of Hawaiian studies, culture and literature, and thus began her passion for research. Ever of a civic mind she joined the royal societies of Ahahui Ka'ahumanu on May 7, 1949 and has been a member in good standing with Hale O Na Ali'i O Hawai'i, Helu Ekahi, Halau O Wahiika'ahu'ula, holding the rank of Lei Hulu Makua. In January 1965, Aunty Edith was installed as Worthy Matron, Verona Chapter No. 1 Order of the Eastern Star at the Scottish Rite Temple in Agana Heights, on Guam. Prior employment included various Federal Government positions at Pearl Harbor-Hawaii, Guam, Adak-Alaska, Saigon, Vietnam and Midway. She also worked as a Hawaiian Language Translator/Researcher for Title Guarantee and for Ashford & Wriston Law firm, the ILWU, and also managed Kirkpatrick Travel Agency in Waianae. Aunty Edith retired as a "Scholar in Residence" for her dear and true friend, Her Royal Highness Princess Abigail Kinoiki Kekaulike Kawananakoa where she truly enjoyed her work as a noted Hawaiian genealogist, consummate researcher, writer, composer, author, professor, lecturer, and kumu hula. Achievements Hawaii Participant, American Folk-life Festival, Smithsonian Institute, Washington, D.C. Hawaii Participant, Pacific Arts Festival in New Zealand and Tahiti 1995-2007: Project Director Hawaiian Language Newspaper Indexing Project (Bishop Museum) Author, Hawaiian Genealogies Volumes I and II (Volume III in progress) Awards Ambassador of Hawaii Award from Governor John Waihe'e Ke Kukui Malama - Office of Hawaiian Affairs A Living Treasure of Hawaii - Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawaii David Malo Award - Rotary Club of West Oahu Order of Distinction - State Council on Hawaiian Heritage Pulama Award - Kalihi Palama Culture & Arts Society He Makana Hi'ipoli Makamae - Prince Kuhio Hawaiian Civic Club of Honolulu Kalani Ali'i Award - Aha Hipu'u - Hale o Na Ali'i Kulia I ka Nu'u Award - Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs Convention - San Diego Kukui O Lota Award - 35th Annual Prince Lot Hula Festival Services will be held November 8, at Borthwick Mortuary, 1330 Maunakea Street. Public visitation will be from 9 a.m. to 12 Noon. Service will begin from 12 Noon to 1:30 p.m. Graveside services will be held on Sunday, November 9, 2014 at 12 Noon at Valley of the Temples Memorial Park in Kaneohe.

Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the deceased